Local News

New Electronic System for Emergency Protection Orders Announced

Victims of domestic violence will now receive Emergency Protection Orders (EPOs) more quickly in Jefferson County by using a new electronic process.

“Individuals seeking a protection order previously faced an inefficient and often a lengthy process that relied on paper copies and (officials) had to walk the floors to find a judge and for approval,” said Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer.

EPOs provide victims of domestic violence with temporary protection from alleged abusers while they find more permanent solutions. The new electronic process makes communication between agencies that respond to domestic violence faster and more efficient, said Circuit Court Clerk David Nicholson.

“Under the old system it was not unusual for it to take several hours to get an EPO authorized and to the sheriff’s office. Now with this new technology the communication and the EPO can be electronically authorized and electronically available to the sheriff’s office in a matter of a few minutes,” said Nicholson.

The electronic EPO is the first of its kind in the country, said Chief Judge of Family Court Stephen George.

The time from a victim’s statement, to a judge’s approval, to the sheriff’s department was averaged at 30 minutes last week, said George.

Even though electronic EPOs don’t solve every problem, the time the new system saves in domestic violence situations is crucial, said Marta Maria Miranda, president of the Center for Women and Families.

“This is a deterrent. EPOs work 80 percent of the time. Nothing works 100 percent of the time. If someone wants to kill you they’re going to. But they do work 80 percent of the time. They’re crucial,” said Miranda.

Local News

Center Seeking Gift Card Donations

By Sheila Ash

The Center for Women and Families is asking for donations of gift cards this holiday season. The center’s goal is one thousand gift cards in $25 increments.

Spokesperson Steven Bowling says the gift cards make it more convenient for their residents to shop for their children.

“It helps us with safety issues to where if they can’t leave the shelter they can shop online. And if you know there is a specific toy that an individual wants the mother can actually shop for herself. You know make that decision and that choice for her own family which is something that she’s not used to doing,” he said.

Bowling says they prefer gift cards from Target, K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Kohl’s and local malls.

Gift cards may be dropped off at the Center’s main campus at 927 South Second Street Monday through Saturday from 8 am to 6 pm.

Local News Next Louisville

New Housing Planned At Center For Women And Families

By Sheila Ash

Louisville’s Center for Women and Families along with several community partners broke ground Wednesday on 22 townhouse apartments for survivors of domestic violence. The energy-efficient units will be built next to the center’s campus in downtown Louisville.

Sherry Currens, Executive Director of the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association (KDVA) says these will be permanent homes.

“One of the things that’s so important when you’ve been forced to leave your home when you’ve had to you know leave everything you have behind, you have small children, you need some place to make you feel like a family again and this will give us that opportunity,” she said.

Currens says the Louisville housing is part of an $8.8 million scattered-site project. She says there are twenty six units under construction in Paducah, Murray and Morehead.

Residents whose income is at or below 60 percent of area median income will be eligible to participate in the program. The units will be completed in December 2011.

Local News Next Louisville

Dr. Troutman Discusses His Decision To Leave Louisville

Outgoing director of public health Dr. Adewale Troutman says his decision to step down was not entirely politically motivated.

Troutman announced Tuesday he would leave Louisville for a job with the University of South Florida. Mayor Jerry Abramson appointed Troutman in 2003, and the next mayor could appoint a different health director. While the issue hasn’t come up in the mayor’s race, Troutman says it has been on his mind. It was not, however, the main reason for his departure.

“I don’t want anyone to think that was the major decision; that it was, “Well, we’ve got a new mayor so we have to get out of town,” he says. “No, we’ve been looking for a while. It’s been seven years we’ve been here.”

Troutman will step down in November.

Since 2003, Dr. Troutman has helped secure millions of dollars in grants and has overseen the founding of several public health programs, including the Center for Health Equity and the Mayor’s Healthy Hometown Movement. Currently, the department is administering flu and H1N1 vaccines and putting together an education program on trans-fat.

Troutman’s resignation also means his wife Denise Vazquez Troutman will leave her position as head of the Center for Women and Families, which helps victims of domestic and sexual abuse. Dr. Troutman says he and his wife’s departure will not mean an end to their projects in Louisville.

“No one is indispensable,” he says. “That’s a lesson I learned a long time ago. You may have your things together, but no one is indispensable. The challenge is—for the work that we’ve all been doing—to take it to the next level.”

Dr. Troutman will be temporarily replaced by medical director Dr. Matt Zahn, who says he plans to stay and continue Troutman’s work. The next mayor is expected to launch a national search for a new director.

Local News Next Louisville

Denise Troutman Stepping Down From CWF

The departure of Louisville Public Health Director Dr. Adewale Troutman in November means there will be a vacancy at another Louisville organization in about six months.

Denise Vazquez Troutman will relocate to South Florida with her husband, and is stepping down as president and CEO of the Center for Women and Families, which helps victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence.

Director of Community Engagement Stephen Bowling says Troutman has headed the center for the past four-and-a-half years.

“She’s going to stay through March 4 of 2011. She has committed to being here through our biggest Celebration of Service and Survival, which is our largest fundraiser that happens on February 23,” he said.

Bowling says the search for a new president and CEO will be launched next month.

Arts and Humanities Local News

My Morning Jacket Announces It Will Play with Louisville Youth Orchestra

The Louisville-based band My Morning Jacket announced today it will perform at the new KFC Yum! Center this fall. My Morning Jacket will perform at the new arena Oct. 29 with the Louisville Youth Orchestra, with some of the proceeds going to the organization.

The band made the announcement at ear X-tacy along with leaders from the youth orchestra.

Lead singer Jim James says that the band is dedicated to spotlighting local businesses and the arts.

“We want to remind everybody in Louisville that there are great outlets for youth to discover music and discover art,” James says. “Unfortunately, in our society, the arts have continually been cut back and shortchanged, so we want to let everybody know that there are great programs out here for kids to get involved in music and art.”

Leaders from the Louisville Youth Orchestra say that the group will get one dollar from every ticket purchased , which could double funding for its scholarship program.

Melody Welsh-Buchholz is the Louisville Youth Orchestra’s executive director.

“This will allow up to 50 new members who otherwise would not be able to participate with us because of economic circumstances to be a part of this organization,” she says. “And that is a really, really big deal for us.”

The usual annual budget for the scholarship fund is $15,000.

In 2008, My Morning Jacket held a concert at Waterfront Park with the Louisville Leopard Percussionists in a performance that benefited the Center for Women and Families.

The concert is being presented by WFPL’s sister station, WFPK.

Wax Fang will open for My Morning Jacket. Tickets go on sale Saturday, August 14.

Local News

Thousands Participate In Second Denim Day

Tuesday is the Center for Women and Families’ second-annual denim-day.

Thousands of people in the area are wearing denim to work to raise awareness of sexual assault.

Center for Women and Families’ President Denise Vazquez Troutman says the threat of assault exists everywhere.

“One in six women will be the victim of sexual assault,” she says. “Also, two college campuses [in Louisville], huge prevalence there – we are a huge college community. So if the statistics are one and six, just think of our own community.”

The significance of wearing denim comes from an Italian rape trial, where a judge ruled that a victim’s blue jeans could have only been removed by the victim.  To protest the decision, California legislators wore denim and the idea spread to other cities.

State of Affairs

Families & Economic Stress

Friday, March 20, 2009
Families & Economic Stress
We’ve all felt it these past several months, the mounting tension, the low level but persistent anxiety over the economy. But for some of us, it’s more than just a bad feeling. Economic stress is taking its toll on American families, from an increase in domestic abuse to stressed out kids to older people on fixed incomes just trying to get by, often while taking care of elderly relatives. So what’s a family to do? How are we coping? And when we can’t, where do we turn? Join us today as we talk with people and organizations trying to deal with the situation and get some ideas as to how to handle it ourselves before it spirals out of control. Call us with your thoughts and experiences.

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