DA Steidley’s office collecting cell phones during Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Staff Reports Claremore Progress
In recognition of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, DVAM, Verizon Wireless, in collaboration with the Oklahoma District Attorneys Association, has set up a statewide HopeLine drive.
HopeLine is a program that puts wireless technology and the nation’s largest and most reliable wireless network to work in communities by collecting no-longer-used wireless phones and accessories, from any carrier and repurposing them to serve as a lifeline for domestic violence victims.
Additionally, all proceeds from the sale of devices that can’t be repurposed go to domestic violence awareness and prevention organizations — in the form of HopeLine grants.
“Domestic violence is an intense battle in every county of Oklahoma. We continually struggle with a high number of domestic violence cases each year,” said Janice Steidley, District Attorney for Rogers, Mayes and Craig counties. “The HopeLine phones provide an opportunity for victims to communicate safely, securely and instantly. HopeLine phones are seen as a lifeline for many domestic violence victims.”
For phone collections, HopeLine boxes are located all around the State of Oklahoma during the month of October. In DA Steidley’s district HopeLine boxes can be found in the District Attorney’s Office in each courthouse in Rogers, Mayes and Craig counties.
“We decided to keep the boxes at a centralized location, the courthouse in each county and keep the boxes in our office which are secured so people who donate phones can be assured their phones are kept secured and will be released to Verizon who will then scrub all phones to make sure any information from the previous owner is erased,” stated DA Steidley.
Office hours for the District Attorney’s Offices are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Mayes County, 8:30 a.m.t o 5 p.m. in Rogers County and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Craig County.
All offices are closed from noon to 1p.m for lunch.
“As the communications company, we have the opportunity to help those who feel they have no voice, as is commonly the case with victims of domestic violence, “said Dean Taylor, president of the South Central Region of Verizon Wireless.
“Victims often need a safe communication line, either because their abuser has taken their phone or because their phone activity is being monitored.
Verizon’s HopeLine program supplies shelters with free phone and service to those victims so they can make the calls necessary to reach family and friends.”
“This is a win -win for the community and for victims of domestic violence, we are proud of Verizon putting such time and dedication into this cause and I and my office are happy to assist such a good cause,” said DA Steidley.