Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Maddie Blog #2

It’s hard to believe that we have already completed our fellowship meetings for the year 2015! It is going to be a busy holiday season however, as I finalize and begin to work with my partner organization, meet up with Anna to work on my policy brief draft, and prepare for the big year ahead!

My narrowed down topic for my policy brief is the creation of “Safe Haven” legislation for areas of North Carolina where high immigration populations reside in order for non citizen women to feel safer contacting law enforcement in the event of a domestic violence incident and/or sexual assault. This will certainly be informed by recent events, considering Governor Pat McCrory’s recent signing of a bill that made immigrants much more vulnerable in NC by outlawing sanctuary cities. This will shift my overall policy brief positioning to go from advocating for more “Safe Haven” or “Sanctuary Cities” in NC to specifically advocating for them for the purposes of preventing domestic violence and sexual assault among non-citizen women. I have a few steps going forward to finalize my policy brief work:

 Finalize and establish volunteering schedule with NCCASA and with the criminal court to observe domestic violence cases. I have reached out to NCCASA and have not yet received a response, but they are aware of our fellowship program and I am confident we will be able to partner together.

 Collect research on areas of NC with highest concentration of noncitizen populations

 Consult with Anna over weekend coffee meetings over the next two months to ensure I am headed in the right direction.

While I am intimidated by the amount of work there is left to do, I am overall feeling excited, hopeful, and motivated. My mentor, Anna, has been incredible in regards to taking the time to meet with me and make sure I am supported. This cause is one that I am very passionate about, and while the governor’s recent actions have made the road all the more difficult, I argue that it actually increases the importance of the work I am doing on my policy brief. I am hoping my partnership with NCCASA is able to begin soon so that I may include their best practice model and collect information of a more humanistic nature of the experience of survivors of domestic assault and violence to make my policy brief all the more effective.

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