The holidays are over. The presents have all been opened; families have returned to their own homes; workers are back in the office. But, the spirit of giving doesn’t have to be tossed aside with the wrapping paper and holiday leftovers. We all have an opportunity to do something good for others by putting our old wireless phones to work for someone who needs it — a victim of domestic violence.
The phone that was just replaced over the holidays may seem old and outdated to you. However, to someone trying to escape a dangerous situation, it represents a lifeline.
Victims of domestic violence are often denied what many of us enjoy every day — friendships and family connections, personal safety, and financial control. Cutting off communication is often one of the ways an abuser seeks control of a victim.
The ability to communicate reliably with friends, family, counselors or law enforcement is critical for domestic violence victims as they rebuild their lives. It is the link victims need to maintain supportive relationships and contact important resources for items such as safe housing and scheduling job interviews. Wireless phones can also provide a key connection to law enforcement and can equip survivors with the technology necessary to begin building their new lives.
So, at Verizon Wireless, we continue to increase awareness and grow our HopeLine phone recycling and reuse program, and encourage customers to donate their old phones at our Communications Stores nationwide.
Because those of us in the corporate world likely work side-by-side with someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence, Verizon Wireless regularly discusses domestic violence with its employees through internal communications and in our code of business conduct. In October 2007, we also began to implement SafeWork, an innovative training program from Safe Horizon that helps all of us better understand the impact of domestic violence in our workplace.
According to Rita Anita Linger, executive director of The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence, “Verizon Wireless has demonstrated its commitment to our work by supporting important programs for many years. Verizon Wireless is a corporate social change agent and leader, they recognize the need for the corporate community to offer solutions to domestic violence and the impact it has on individuals, families and communities.”
For more information on HopeLine, visit www.verizonwireless.com/hopeline.
President of the Carolinas/Tennessee Region of Verizon Wireless