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NH Business Review August 18, 2021
More than a year of crisis has created untold need in New Hampshire. The state’s nonprofits — many of them women-led — stepped in to help meet that need, all the while having to navigate the immense obstacles the pandemic posed. Here we spotlight the weighty and wondrous work of some of those women and their organizations.
Lyn Schollett of NH Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence
When stay-at-home orders were issued as the pandemic began to take hold, it had a profound impact on survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. “They were trapped at home with their abusers and increasingly isolated from services and people who could help them,” says Lyn Schollett, executive director of the Concord-based NH Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence.
With a mission to create safe and just communities through advocacy, prevention and empowerment of anyone affected by domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as stalking and human trafficking, Schollett says the Coalition launched a statewide media campaign to reach survivors and worked collaboratively with their 12 crisis centers to quickly implement new online chat, text and video services. They also worked with courts to allow victims to file for restraining orders online and to make sure there was enough funding to place survivors fleeing abuse in hotels when shelters were full.
Schollett says the pandemic worsened stresses that victims already face — among them, economic hardship, the absence of school and childcare, and extreme isolation. “Through it all,” she says, “crisis center advocates continued to be innovative, scrappy, and completely focused on the well-being and safety of victims
Nashua Telegraph August 13, 2021
“Throughout the last 18 months, we have witnessed the incredible resilience of advocates at New Hampshire’s crisis centers as they worked tirelessly to pivot services to meet the changing needs of survivors and respond to the shadow pandemic of domestic and sexual violence in the wake of COVID-19,” said Pamela Keilig, Public Policy Specialist at the New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. “This past year has introduced a host of new challenges, while simultaneously adding to the barriers that many survivors face in accessing critical, life-saving services in their greatest hour of need. However, we must recognize that we are living in a sustained pandemic that will have long-term, ripple effects and continue to shape how we move forward as a state and nation to address violence in our communities. We are grateful to Congresswoman Kuster for her unwavering support for survivors in New Hampshire and her ongoing commitment to ensuring that advocates have essential resources to meet the needs of survivors throughout the Granite State.”
Yahoo News/Union Leader August 11, 2021
"The state's current background check system provides the necessary safeguards to ensure that dangerous abusers will not have access to firearms that can be used to kill their victims. Victim safety must remain paramount when considering any changes to our background check system in New Hampshire," said Amanda Grady Sexton, director of public affairs for the Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.
NH News Bulletin August 10, 2021
Gov. Chris Sununu vetoed two bills that would have ended the state’s Gun Line Tuesday, halting a proposal by some gun rights advocates to send all firearm background check requests to the FBI.
In a long-awaited decision, Sununu struck down Senate Bill 141 and House Bill 334, two bills that would have made broad changes for how handgun background checks are run.
Some advocates for the veto thanked Sununu for his decision Tuesday.
“We applaud Gov. Sununu for vetoing SB 141 and HB 334,” the Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence said in a statement. “We are grateful that our background check system will remain strong and responsive to protect victims of crime in New Hampshire.”
WMUR August 10, 2021
The chief spokesperson for New Hampshire’s leading advocacy group on behalf of victims of sexual and domestic abuse issued a comment on Cuomo’s resignation and attempt to explain his behavior.
“We commend the 11 survivors who courageously came forward to share their experiences of sexual abuse and harassment,” said Amanda Grady Sexton, director of public affairs of the New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.
“Sexual harassment is not a ‘misunderstanding’ – it’s a serious crime that has short and long term effects on survivors and their loved ones. We hope that there is true accountability moving forward and justice for the survivors whose lives were forever changed by Governor Cuomo.”