Showing posts with label Women. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Women. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Stalked In Alabama: What To Do

The Capitol Building
of Alabama.
(Photo by Altairisfar/Wikimedia Commons)
Alabama, the 30th largest state of the United States of America. Also known as the Yellowhammer state in the Heart of Dixie, this southeastern state is the 24th most populated state among 50. Home to Redstone Arsenal, University of Alabama and Maxwell Air Force, it is estimated that over 25 million people visit the state every year.

Stalking is defined as the unwanted and repeated contact towards a person, people and/or group. As a form of intimidation and harassment, stalking is simply contact that is not wanted. And when that unwanted contact becomes to be a nuance, that is when it becomes stalking. As a victim of stalking, I have found it very difficult to find information regarding this topic. As I often contemplate why it is hard to find a resource regarding this, my only guess is because a lot of people do not take this seriously. And I personally believe most have never experienced this hence why they refuse to help those they cannot relate with. I'm noticing many cases of true crime within the last decade of very obvious murders being painted as suicides (Morgan Ingram, for instance) and limited care from law enforcement. I can only ask - why?

Alabama is a state with a lot of history and starts the countdown of the 50 nifty United States from the 13 original colonies. And guess what? The great news is, there is help in Alabama for those of you who are victims of stalking. According to several law enforced in 2012, under various codes stalking is very much punishable by law in the state of Alabama.

Under code of Alabama § 13A-6-90. Stalking in the first degree. (2012) This code states that a crime of stalking in the first degree is classified as a class C felony. This means that a person who intentionally harasses and follows with the intent to harm you is guilty. This includes threats, whether expressed or implied. If you feel you are in fear for your life and fear death of the suspected stalker, this is where this code applies.

Under code of Alabama § 13A-6-90.1. Stalking in the second degree. (2012) This code states that a crime of stalking in the second degree is considered a class B misdemeanor. This means that a person who intentionally and/or repeatedly harasses you in efforts to initiate unwanted contact whether via telephone, email, etc. is guilty. This also includes any third-party source who makes contact for the said person. Enforced again in the Summer of 2017 under H.B. 498, after the perpetrator has been informed to cease contact, the end result is guilty in the second degree.

Under code of Alabama § 13A-6-91. Aggravated stalking in the first degree. (2012) This code states that a crime of aggravated stalking in the first degree is classified as a class B felony. Any person who violates the provisions of § 13A-6-90(a) including court orders and restraining orders, will be tried under Alabama law for aggravated stalking.

Under code of Alabama § 13A-6-91.1. Aggravated stalking in the second degree (2012) This code states that a crime of aggravated stalking in the second degree is classified as a class C felony. Any person who violates the provisions of § 13A-6-90 including court orders and restraining orders, will be tried under Alabama law for aggravated stalking.

With action comes evidence. In order to both effectively and efficiently report stalking, it is very crucial to keep a timeline or a log of the events. This is what is often referred to as a course of conduct. Everything shared before the threat, leading up to the threat and to present as the stalking is persisting. And speaking of threats, a credible threat is very vital when reporting stalking. This can be a threat that is expressed and/or even implied. If you feel that the person stalking you is scaring you or making you fear for your life, you have the right to report this. You are constitutionally protected by law to report any crime. If you feel your life is danger, it is very crucial to report it.

Keep in mind that I am referring to only criminal law. At this time, Alabama does not have any laws to protect stalking victims civilly; however, with the right push and shove, we can hopefully change these laws for the victims in the Alabama area. Alabama is also a state that does not offer address protection from stalkers. And because of this unfortunately, Alabama currently does not offer any stalking protection orders; however, stalking is still punishable under criminal stalking laws and federal laws.

Speaking of federal laws, there are quite a few that really play a role in helping stalking victims. According to federal law code 18 USCS § 2261A. Stalking. (2013) any person who plays any reasonable fear of death in another person is considered a stalker and therefore can and will be punished as the law sees fit. With the intent to harass, injure and even intimidate, any person who does this can be punished. And under title 2261(b), this is all punishable by law. You can read more about the stalking federal law here.


Need Assistance?

If you are a victim of stalking, please check out the Alabama Coalition Against Domestic Violence (or ACADV). Located in the heart of Alabama, you can reach them directly by phone at (334) 832-4842. You can also email them at info@acadv.org.

Other organizations you can contact include:

Alabama Coalition Against Rape (or ACAR). Located in the heart of Montgomery, this organization is always here to help. You can reach them via phone at (334) 264-0123.

2nd Chance, Inc. Located in Anniston, this is a crisis organization that serves six counties in the Alabama area including Calhoun, Cherokee, Cleburne, Etowah, Randolph and Talladega. You can reach them directly at (256) 236-7381.

Crisis Center Inc. (Rape Response + SANE). Located in Birmingham, this is a crisis center serving six counties including Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, Shelby, St. Clair and Walker. You can reach them at (205) 323-7782.

Crisis Center of Russell County. Live in Russell County? If so, you can reach this Alabama organization via phone at (334) 297-4435 today.

Crisis Center of North Alabama. Located in the heart of Huntsville, this organization is serving three counties including Jackson, Limestone and Madison. If you live in these areas, please call them directly at (256) 716-4052.

Family Services of North Alabama. Serving both Delkab and Marshall counties, this Albertville organization is here to serve you. Especially if you are a victim of stalking. You can reach them at (256) 878-9159.

Lifelines Family Counseling Center Inc. of Mobile. If you live in Mobile, Washington or Clarke county, you are going to want to contact this organization immediately. You can reach them directly at (251) 431-5100.

Lighthouse Counseling Center (or STAR). Serving six counties including Montgomery, Elmore, Butler, Lowndes, Crenshaw and Autauga. You can reach their office and crisis line at (334) 286-5980.

Mental Health Association in Morgan County. Serving both Morgan and Lawrence counties, this organization is here for stalking victims 24/7. You can reach them at (256) 353-1160.

Rape Counselors of East Alabama. Serving four counties including Chambers, Tallapoosa, Lee and Macon, this is a great organization that helps victims of sexual assault; however, they will never turn their backs on stalking victims. You can reach them at (334) 741-0707 today.

Safehouse of Shelby County Inc. Serving Shelby, Coosa and Clay county, this organization can be reached directly at (205) 669-1877. You can also reach their crisis line at (205) 669-5339.

Shoals Crisis Center. Located in the heart of Florence, this organization will never turn their backs on a victim of stalking. Serving four counties including Colbert, Franklin, Lauderdale and Marion, you can reach their office at (256)765-0025. You can also reach their crisis line at (256) 767-1100.

The House of Ruth, Inc. Serving eight counties total including Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike, you can reach them directly at (337) 793-5214. You can also reach their crisis line at (334) 793-2232.

The Lighthouse of Baldwin County. Serving both Baldwin and Escambia, you can reach their office (251) 947-6196 and crisis line at (251) 947-4393 today.

Turning Point. Serving nine counties total, this is an organization that will never ignore a stalking victim. Serving Bibb, Fayette, Greene, Hale, Lamar, Marengo, Pickens, Sumter and Tuscaloosa counties. You can reach them directly at their office (205) 758-0808 or call their crisis line at (205) 758-0808.

Victim Services of Cullman, Inc. Serving both Culman and Winston counties, you can reach their office at (256) 775-2600 or their crisis line at (256) 734-6100.


Over millions of women are stalked around the world. The time is now to recognize that stalking is a crime and should not be ignored. I will do my best to update this article periodically. If you have any additional information you would like to share, please do so in the comments.

Stay tuned as I explore the largest state in the United States, Alaska. With not even a million residence totally, the Last Frontier is a state worth exploring. Purchased in 1867 from Russia for a little over $7 million (that is about 2-3 cents per acre), Alaska is "North to the Future" but how are their stalking laws?

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Candace Smith introduces the Lady Warrior shirt

The beautiful Candace Smith
wearing one of the Lady Warrior
shirts.
If you haven't noticed this Summer, Bravo's "Millionaire Matchmaker" made the move over to WE tv and rebranded the show as "Million Dollar Matchmaker".  There is a new format along with matchmakers from the past, but one thing remains the same is Candace Smith. In fact, matchmaker Candace Smith returns as a senior matchmaker; actually the only matchmaker to appear in every episode this season. In true Candace fashion, she keeps it sexy and so much fun every Friday night at 10pm/9c.  
 
In addition to the new show, Candace stars in the film My Father, Die, which premiered at South by Southwest and will be in theaters at the end of the year. This action thriller is set in the South and is written and directed by Sean Brosnan and produced by Pierce Brosnan, Sanja Banjic and Orian Williams. Amazing right?
 
And if that wasn't enough, the beautiful and brilliant philanthropist created the Lady Warrior Shirt, which gives a portion of proceeds to the Downtown Women's Center in the heart of Los Angeles, where she has been a longtime volunteer.  
Miss Hawaii 2014 Moani Hara
wearing the Lady Warrior shirt.
The Lady Warrior shirts are available
at Candace's official store.
 
When asked about the inspiration behind the shirts, Candace said, "The Lady Warrior Shirt was inspired by all the fascinating women in my life who are not at all the one-dimensional image perpetuated by the media. Some of these women include the young girls I have the pleasure of coaching; the resilient women at the Downtown Women’s Center I interact with; the boss women in the entertainment industry; the strong, Southern women in my family and my Miss USA sisters."
 
"Many have endured much more than anyone would ever know because of how high they hold their heads, the warmth in their hearts and the swag in their steps. I worked closely with Frank Denbow of Startup Threads (Shopify) to bring my vision to life and I'm eternally grateful," she continued.
 
What is Candace's mission? What inspired her to create the Lady Warrior Shirt? "I hope to not only spread awareness for the Downtown Women's Center but to also empower women of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds to find their inner warrior.  We are taught as young women to be ladies but it is also crucial that women learn to be fighters as well.  Women should be comfortable with this duality and celebrate it," she shared.
 
The Lady Warrior shirt is all about
women's empowerment. An
incentive to the soul.
So, how will the purchase of a shirt help the Downtown Women's Center? According to Candace, they will help the shelter immensely. "I worked with the Downtown Women's Center, where I have volunteered for many years, to arrange for a portion of all proceeds to go directly to the center. The Downtown Women’s Center is so important because it is not just a shelter; they provide permanent supportive housing and a safe and healthy community fostering dignity, respect, and personal stability with the goal of supporting the women until they feel strong again to be independent."
 
To support the Downtown Women's Center, simply purchase a Lady Warrior Shirt at Candace's official store. Just remember, when you do rock it to share the link along with the hashtag #LadyWarriorShirt all over social media.
 
Catch up with Candace on her official website as well as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
 
Check out my latest interview with her about Million Dollar Matchmaker here.

Friday, May 13, 2016

U by Kotex introduces NYC's first ever period pop-up shop, The Period Shop

National Women's Health Week kicked off on Sunday. What better way to celebrate this amazing time of year than with sharing something that is history in the making. Today, U by Kotex opened up their very first ever pop-up shop in Flatiron, the Period Shop. Located in the heart of the big apple on 138 5th Ave., you are definitely going to want to visit the Period Shop, as it opens today. Next to Victoria's Secret, women can fully embrace the world of menstruation in more ways than one. With everything from a PMS-friendly comfort food bar to live performances to signature cocktails to even digital games and more, this is one of the best places to be today.

What started out as a suggestion, turned into a vision which later turned into reality, thanks to college student and choreographer Sarah Michelson. Not only yesterday did U by Kotex create the Period Calculator, a calculator that tracks and predicts your period and even ovulation. U by Kotex continues to empower women around the world and as a result, make a difference for women and their health. In fact, just by searching #periodprojects you will discover all of the concepts and contributions towards women's health.

“I think many people, men and women, are probably a little uncomfortable thinking or talking about menstruation,” said Representative Grace Meng, Democrat of New York told Roni Caryn Rabin of the NY Times recently. “We’re thinking of how we can change the conversation.”

The Period Shop is open today from 11 am until 9 pm. It is also open tomorrow from 11 am until 9 pm and on Sunday from 11 am until 6 pm. For more information about NYC's first ever period pop-up shop visit U by Kotex today. #UbyKotex

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Shapewear talk with Bubbles Bodywear: Exclusive interview with Karen E. Jones

Love My Bubbles is one of the hautest secrets to achieving a flawless figure. Offering an extensive selection of shapewear, this brand is a pioneer in the world of curve-enhancing. Since 2003, the Bubbles Bodywear brand has not only changed the way women and men look, but feel too. Recently, I had the chance to speak with Karen E. Jones, the founder and CEO of the Bubbles Bodywear brand. Here is what she had to tell me...

(Q) Hello Karen. How are you? Tell me a little more about the Love My Bubbles Brand...

K.J: The Bubbles Bodywear brand offers innovative underthings that not only boost the figure, but more importantly, our self-esteem. We strive to create high-quality, effective shapewear designs at affordable prices for women (and men) who want to boost their backside. Throughout the history of women’s foundation garments for the bottom half of our bodies, the primary focus has been on slimming, but without discretion (flattening everything including our natural backside curves). In contrast, Bubbles’ focus from day one has been to flatter, boost and flaunt those female curves. We believe that when we look great, we feel great. When we feel confident, we put ourselves in more challenging situations, we experience more and we become stronger people. We know from listening to our customers that our shapewear can be a small but important part of this process.

(Q) What inspired you to create this amazing shapewear brand? Tell me a little more about the inspiration behind Love My Bubbles...

K.J: I started Bubbles Bodywear in 2003. I launched our website with 3 patented “booty lifting” shapers that I invented to boost my own curve-deficient figure. My timing was great! Heroin chic was out and J-Lo and Beyonce were in. I listened to customers’ style requests over the years, and began developing and designing more padded and lifting shapewear. Making our own original products gave me control over the style, quality and sizing of our product offerings as well as our supply chain. As a result, Bubbles Bodywear has evolved from a “house brand” on our website LoveMyBubbles.com to our primary focus. Regarding this, we have some exciting news! As of January 2016 we now offer women’s shapewear only designed and made by Bubbles Bodywear!

(Q) Is it true you are offering new seamless additions to the Love My Bubbles (Bubbles Bodywear) brand? Tell me a little more about the new seamless essentials...

K.J: In 2015 our design and manufacturing focus shifted to seamless shapewear. It’s a popular category in the shapewear industry and an area where we were lacking. Finding a manufacturing partner was key which is why we had not launched a seamless collection in previous years. Italy was my primary target as they are known worldwide and throughout history for their superior quality. In 2014 we began working with a “mom and pop” operation in Italy to create our first seamless booty-lifting shapers that we call our “High End” Collection. In just one year we grew this category from zero to eleven new, beautiful, innovative and comfortable seamless body shapers that I’m very proud to offer our customers.

(Q) Diversity is definitely in your forte, but I have to ask, what are your thoughts about the diversity in the lingerie industry?

K.J: We have an incredibly diverse customer base! This is both a challenge and an opportunity for us to create products for everyone who comes to Bubbles looking for problem-solving shapewear. At trade shows and throughout the industry I have seen a shift in the past 13+ years from the basics (bras and underwear for the masses) to more focused product offerings. For example, since our inception we have focused on increasing curves – people thought I was crazy in the beginning, but I thought “if I need it, there are other people out there who also need it”. I think this is the prevailing attitude with entrepreneurs in the industry, meaning that you don’t have to create a brand that will take over the world…just focus on satisfying an untapped market. If there are more companies like Bubbles, everyone will be able to find the products they want or need in the marketplace.

(Q) When a woman thinks they need more control of an area, do you think they should go up or down a size?

K.J: Definitely not! This is a great question because the fact is that, especially when shopping online, people often do exactly this. Wearing the wrong size shapewear may result in the garment not functioning properly, an extremely uncomfortable fit, or product damage. Instead, look for a product that is described to do specifically what you need (ie: cinch the waist, slim the thighs, etc). And at LoveMyBubbles.com we encourage customers to follow on our size charts and customer comments about fit and sizing.

(Q) What is the most common mistake women make when trying to find the right shapewear?

K.J: Buying the “bestseller” rather than buying what is right for them. Bubbles pioneered the industry of booty-defining shapewear and in doing so we have spent these 13 years educating our customers on how to buy our shapewear. Not only choosing a garment size but choosing the type, thickness and width of booty padding can be a big challenge. This is why we produce product videos, offer an extensive FAQ on our website and offer very detailed descriptions of our products. Many of our customers study our website for ages before they finally buy! When in doubt, we encourage customers to call. Currently all of our Customer Service operators have 18 months up to 10 years experience advising customers on the right Bubbles for their needs.

(Q) Is it true that men are wearing shapewear now days?

KJ: Yes! We’ve heard them called “mirdles” which is my personal favorite. But our specialty is padded underwear for men. They are a very popular item for a wide demographic of men. The fact is that anatomically men have fewer fat cells on the gluteus maximus. So technically, they need padded underwear more than women do! We have a regular male customer who’s a doctor. He wears our “Jackpot!” padded boxer brief at work because he feels self-conscious about his sagging scrubs as his residents walk behind him during rounds.

(Q) Who can benefit from using Love My Bubbles?

K.J: After 13 years I still hear about new and creative uses for our products. It’s not just about looking better in a pair of jeans. It’s also about self-esteem or even comfort. We supply movie sets, photo shoots, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, plastic surgery offices, cancer centers, the theater, costumers, fashion designers, stylists, new moms, people who have experienced weight loss (intentionally or as a result of illness, medication, etc) and people sitting for long periods of time. I could go on and on!

Many years ago we received a note from a customer thanking us. She had lost a dangerous amount of weight as a result of stress during her mother’s bout with an illness. After her mother passed she was not going to attend the services for fear of what people would think of her appearance. She told us that wearing our products (to help her look as if she was a healthier weight), gave her the confidence to stand up in front of family and friends to give the eulogy. I never anticipated that our products would have this type of benefit or effect when we started out. But I’m so happy to know that we help people in so many different and unexpected ways.

(Q) For all of those shape wear enthusiasts reading this interview, what would you like them to know? What is next for the Love My Bubbles brand?

K.J: More original and creative shapewear solutions from Bubbles Bodywear! As our fiercely loyal brand ambassadors already know, Bubbles is a different kind of company. We’re not here to make and sell typical shapewear styles. We pride ourselves on innovation. We strive to serve markets that are otherwise ignored by bigger companies who require huge margins and a massive customer base to justify product development. Instead, we focus on our customer and a very different kind of bottom line!