How To Watch Roger Goodell's 3 P.M. ET News Conference On Domestic Violence
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell released the following statement this afternoon, outlining the league's plan to stem the tide of domestic violence incidents that have dominated the 2014 season thus far. Most notably, Goodell has pledged to offer financial support to two national domestic violence hotlines, who've seen an increase in calls over the last two weeks and have not had the resources to answer them all. "That must not continue," Goodell writes.
He will be answering questions at 3 p.m. ET.
Subject: Long-Term Partnerships and Initial Educational Efforts on Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault
In my letter of August 28, I said we would ensure that everyone in the NFL has knowledge of and access to resources – both through and independent of the clubs -- relating to issues of domestic violence and sexual assault. I also said that we recognize that these issues affect our entire society, and that we would work to make a genuine and positive difference in a broader context. Today, I write to update you on some significant steps we are taking as part of our long-term commitment to help people affected by domestic violence and sexual assault.
It was brought to our attention that recent events caused The National Domestic Violence Hotline to receive 84 percent more calls during the week of September 8 – 15. According to the organization, more than 50 percent of those calls went unanswered due to lack of staff. That must not continue.
To help address this and other critical and immediate needs, we are entering into long-term partnerships to provide financial, operational and promotional support to two of the leading domestic violence and sexual assault resources: The National Domestic Violence Hotline (The Hotline) and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC). These commitments will enable both The Hotline and NSVRC to help more people affected by domestic violence and sexual assault.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline provides domestic violence victims and survivors access to the largest national network of resources and shelters and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week in 170 languages. The NFL and The Hotline have initiated an immediate process to make services available by adding expert advocates, training and other resources to respond to the increased volume of calls.
The Hotline will add 25 full-time advocates over the next few weeks that will result in an additional 750 calls a day being answered.
The NFL’s support also will enable Loveisrespect to service 24-hour-a-day text chats with young adults affected by dating abuse. Loveisrespect, a project of the National Domestic Violence Hotline and Break the Cycle, is a resource to engage, educate and empower youth and young adults to prevent and end abusive relationships.
The National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) supports sexual violence coalitions across the United States, including the District of Columbia and U.S. territories that direct resources to local advocates and services helping victims of sexual violence. The NFL’s initial support will be directed toward state coalitions to provide additional resources to state and local sexual assault hotlines.
We are also proceeding to implement broad educational programs within our league. Starting within the next 30 days, all league and team personnel -- including executives, coaches, players and staff -- will participate in education sessions on domestic violence and sexual assault. These initial sessions will begin to provide the men and women of the NFL with information and tools to understand and recognize domestic violence and sexual assault. We will work with the NFL Players Association to develop and present this training in the most effective way.
Building on long established NFL Player Engagement programs and services, this is the first in a new set of educational programs for all personnel being developed in conjunction with our recently appointed senior advisors and other leading experts. More programs dedicated to these issues will be established in the coming months.
Photo via Getty
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