January 2015 Newsletter
January is 
Stalking Awareness Month
January is Stalking Awareness Month. According the the Stalking Resource Center, every year 6.6 million people are stalked in the United States. Stalking is a control tool that is often used in domestic violence cases as a way for the abuser to maintain their power and control. 

Nebraska Law defines stalking and harassment as engaging in a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person which seriously terrifies, threatens, or intimidates the person and which serves no legitimate purpose. Stalking is a crime in all 50 states and under the federal government. 

To learn more about stalking, facts, safety plans, how to help victims and find additional resources visit: 

If you are being stalked or know someone who is in the Omaha Metro area please contact one of the following:

Women's Center for Advancement: 402-345-7273
Catholic Charities: The Shelter- 402-672-7118
Safe Haven (Sarpy County)- 800-523-3666
Phoenix House (Pottawattamie County)- 712-928-0266
Public Policy Update

The Domestic Violence Council's Public Policy Committee takes great pride in working strategically for changes in Nebraska's laws. Look here in our monthly newsletter or on our website for updates as the 2015 Unicameral session progresses. The committee will be reviewing proposed legislation to determine what legislative issues the DVC will support, oppose or remain neutral. The Board of Directors approved these goals for 2015: develop and support legislation to improve domestic assault and stalking criminal statutes, and enhance safety and self- determination of survivors and their children in the justice system including family law, good time law, and the protection order system.


A great resource to learn more about the Unicameral and monitor proposed legislation is the Unicameral website.

Sharing Success:
Phoenix House

What is a home to you? Is it safety, comfort, stability and love? Are there people there who will support you and advocate on your behalf? Does it provide some of your most basic needs as well as keep you rooted in your community?


Located in Council Bluffs, Catholic Charities' Phoenix House Domestic Violence Shelter and Sexual Abuse Program provides home and shelter to victims and their children. Phoenix House also offers an array of services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault to Harrison, Pottawattamie, Mills, Fremont, Shelby, Audubon, Cass, Montgomery and Page counties in southwest Iowa. Services available include a 24/7 crisis line, legal advocacy, individual and group counseling, 24-hour hospital response to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, and prevention education.


Each situation is unique, like the assistance provided to a woman who needed help in filing a protective order against her abuser.  She told staff that she would have been overwhelmed at the courthouse and probably would have left because she would have been too intimidated to ask anyone for help. By working with Phoenix House staff, she successfully navigated the often confusing and daunting court system.  Last year, over 525 individuals received criminal justice support from Phoenix House staff, and 255 were assisted in filing protective orders.


Read more here...


Catholic Charities' Phoenix House works towards creating a community free of violence where each individual is respected and valued.  They believe that no one deserves to be abused for any reason, and work toward the empowerment of all victim/survivors, and respect an individual's ability to make choices for themselves. For more information go to

Meet Jacqueline Cunningham
The DVC would like to introduce Jacqueline Cunningham. Jacqueline will be taking over as Training Coordinator as Christon MacTaggart transitions into a new role as Community Response Coordinator. 

Jacqueline has her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nebraska. She started her career working with children as a domestic violence shelter advocate for the YWCA in Omaha. She received her Masters Degree in Human Service and Counseling from Bellevue University in 2002, as well as a Provisional Mental Health license through the State of Nebraska. Jacqueline has over 10 years experience in human services and counseling including working as a sexual assault counselor focused on trauma and crisis intervention. She has worked as an adjunct professor at Iowa Western Community College teaching psychology courses. Currently she is pursuing a Ph.D in Psychology through Capella University.

Jacqueline is married to a Retired Air Force Major who is currently working as a Civilian Chief Logistics Planner for STRATCOM. She lives in Bellevue, NE with her husband and four children. She is thrilled to join the DVC team and we are excited to have her. 
Letter from the 
Executive Director

I am very excited for 2015 because the DVC will embark on a collective impact process to engage all of us to end sexual and domestic violence in the metro area.


That's right: END sexual and domestic violence. We're not trying to be flippant when we say this- one must first have the dream of living in a world without this violence to know whether the daily work we do will actually take us to this mountain top. Because as you know, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had a dream once, too. As we approach MLK Day, I am thinking of him and his dream, and his role in ending segregation. So it's not a far stretch for us to think about our role in creating a world free from violence. 


Join us in the dream. Save the date for our Annual Awards Breakfast and Conference on May 1! More information to come soon.



Tara L. Muir, JD
Executive Director
In This Issue
Quick Links
Community Resources
Domestic Violence Council | 402.210.2195 | |
1941 S 42nd St, Ste 510
Omaha, NE 68105

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