1900’s-1960’s: • The first Family Court is created in Buffalo, NY; the decision was that it is better to solve family problems in a setting of discussion and reconciliation with social service intervention. (1911) • Women are allowed to vote for the first time with the passing of the 19th amendment. (1919) • Civil rights, anti-war and black liberation movements challenge the country, this lays a foundation for the feminist movement. (1950s and 1960s) •
New York domestic violence cases are transferred from criminal court to civil court, where only civil procedures apply. The husband never faces as harsh penalties as he would suffer if he was found guilty in criminal court for assaulting a stranger.
(1962) • Congress began passing laws that prohibited discrimination against women in employment and requiring equal pay for equal work.
(1965) • Beating as cruel and inhumane treatment, becomes grounds for divorce in New York, but the plaintiff must establish that a sufficient number of beatings have taken place.
(1966) • The state of Maine opens one of the first shelters in the United States. (1967) • The women’s libertarian movement started. It claimed that what goes on in the privacy of people’s homes is deeply political.
(1960s and 1970s)1970’s: • Women were coming together with African Americans seeking their equal rights. As a result, women started talking about violence against women in the forms of spouse abuse and sexual assault. Women recognized three major contributors to the violence against them: economic disparity, traditional gender role expectations, and a criminal justice system that did not hold men accountable for violence against women. From this, the battered women’s movement was born. (1970s) •
In Chicago married women who leave their husbands due to battering are denied welfare because of their husband’s salaries. (1970s) • Grassroots organizing efforts begin transforming public consciousness and women’s lives. “We will not be beaten” becomes the mantra of women across the country organizing to end domestic violence. This theme stems from the notion that women face brutality from their husbands and indifference from social institutions. (1970s) • In Philadelphia, Women in Transition forms. Their mission is to provide services to divorced or separated women, battered wives and single mothers. (1971) • Informal networks between women begin sharing information, strategies and support. In Pittsburgh, this influences the founding of the Pittsburgh Women’s Center South which began in the home of Ellen Berliner. (1974) • Al-Anon, Drug and Alcohol support group members, that are battered, organize a shelter in Harrisburg. (1974) • Most US states allow wives to bring criminal action against a husband who inflicts injury upon her. (1975) • In Scotland, a Magistrate fines a husband $11.50 for hitting his wife in the face. He states, you may strike your wife’s bottom if you wish, but you must not strike her in the face. (1975) • Brazil passes a penal code that prohibits husbands from selling, renting, or gambling away their wives. (1975) • The Pennsylvania Coalition against Domestic Violence is formed through grassroots impact on state legislation. (1976) • In Pennsylvania, an old town ordinance is still on the books that no husband shall beat his wife after ten at night or on Sundays. (1976) • Women around the country march annually to “Take Back the Night”. With the walk, women begin to gain confidence because of the collective presence of their collective presence; they begin to feel strength and temporary psychological liberation through turning individual fear into mass anger. (1977) • Still only 14 states have provided funds for shelters. (1979)
Learn more at www.pacwrc.pitt.edu
Mercedes Cannon ( firstname.lastname@example.org) 7/22/2015013:19:33
This is a great synopsis of what has happen in the lives of many women in the area of domestic violence. It is wonderful that the laws have changed concerning domestic violence. It is taken much seriously these days once its reported and praise God for that!