Telling Amy’s Story, a powerful documentary on domestic violence, will air Thursday night (Oct. 7) on five Virginia public television stations as part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. “Telling Amy’s Story” chronicles the time leading up to the death of Amy Homan McGee, a Verizon Wireless employee and mother of two who was shot and killed by her husband. Amy’s story is told in large part by Detective Deirdri Fishel, who is a member of a unit in the State College, Pa., Police Department that focuses on a coordinated response to reports of domestic abuse, including participation in the review of domestic violence homicides to find out what clues were missed, or what steps could be taken to stop a similar situation.
Mariska Hargitay of NBC-TV’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and founder of the Joyful Heart Foundation introduces the documentary.
Domestic violence during the last 20 years has been acknowledged as being a rapidly growing health concern in America’s communities, and as a result, communities around the country are working to develop strategies to stop the violence and provide more protective mechanisms for women and children who are battered (Hart, 1995).
One report estimates that more than 2.5 million females experience some form of violence each year. Further, almost 2 out of 3 females in this population have been attacked by a family member or a person with which they are acquainted. “Telling Amy’s Story” builds on a successful domestic violence prevention program at Pennsylvania State University. Through the program, Penn State has trained employees and students at university campuses to spot the signs of domestic violence and provide assistance to those in need. Both the training program and the documentary were funded through Verizon Foundation grants totaling $385,000.
“We are thrilled to leverage an important national dialogue on domestic violence issues into a regionally informative dialogue on domestic violence issues for a statewide viewing audience on Virginia public television stations,” said John Felton, executive producer and vice president of television programming for WCVE PBS. “Our noncommercial television approach affords us the responsibility and desire to serve our community in ways our commercial television brethren are unable to serve. This is why public television is still very relevant today.”
In the past three years, the Verizon Foundation has awarded more than $15 million to nonprofit organizations that assist domestic violence survivors.
You could join the discussion here.