Stopping the Violence

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Care Lodge Domestic Violence Shelter in Meridian, along with the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the United Way of East Mississippi, held the 10th Annual Violence in Our Community Conference.

The conference is designed to help prepare those who administer aid to domestic abuse victims.

"It's all about providing education and pertinent information to them, that as they go back to their agencies, they will be better able to serve domestic violence victims," said Care Lodge executive director Leslie Payne.

Keynote speaker Eddie Spencer delivered his message about the importance of intervention and prevention of violence in young people. He speaks from the unique perspective of a former violent offender who spent most of his life in jail.

"When I realized that I was my own worst enemy, that's when the change took place," Spencer said. "I encourage young people to really begin to look at who is the one that is destroying their life. Is it someone else or is it themselves?"

Domestic violence is an all-encompassing term. It includes violence in the home, in our schools, and even in the workplace and there is usually a common thread with which the behavior is linked.

Officials say it's all interrelated, that you can't talk about child abuse, domestic violence, gang violence, drug or alcohol abuse, without it all having a common thread.