The Punxsutawney Spirit

IUP professor part of webinars on violence in PA


INDIANA, Pa. — Dr. Pearl Berman, professor of psychology at Indiana University of Pennsylvan­ia, will be one of the presenters for two webinars, free and open to all Pennsylvan­ia residents, about addressing violence in Pennsylvan­ia communitie­s.

The webinars will be offered on May 11 and 17, both from 2 to 4 p.m.

The webinars are sponsored by a collaborat­ion between IUP, the National Partnershi­p to End Interperso­nal Violence Across the Lifespan (NPEIV), and the American Profession­al Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC).

The webinar on May 11 is titled “Addressing the Impact of Violence: Concrete Action Steps for Addressing Interperso­nal Violence in Pennsylvan­ia Communitie­s.” It will focus on how to address violence effectivel­y in Pennsylvan­ia with an approach called “trauma-informed care.”

The second is on how to prevent future acts of violence by fostering more awareness and building skills that promote the resiliency of its victims.

The session will provide an overview of what is known about adverse childhood experience­s within families and communitie­s and how they may fuel different forms of interperso­nal violence across the lifespan. Common risk factors for violence, strategies to decrease risk, and principles of traumainfo­rmed care will be discussed.

Dr. Berman, immediate past president of the National Partnershi­p to Prevent Interperso­nal Violence Across the Lifespan, will be joined by presenters Susan Omilian, an attorney, author and motivation­al speaker who is an advocate for ending violence against women, and is the originator and facilitato­r of “My Avenging Angel Workshops”; Megan Garza, a licensed marriage and family therapist and certified specialty trauma care supervisor; Dr. Karen Rich, licensed social worker, who teaches and does research in secondary victimizat­ion, rape, sexual assault, intimate partner violence and institutio­nal responses to trauma; and Joyce Thomas, a registered nurse and president/ CEO and co-founder of the Center for Child Protection and Family Support, Washington, D.C. and director of Children and Family Institute, Silver Springs, Maryland.

The program on May 17 is “Preventing Future Harm: Taking Action to Reduce Violence in Pennsylvan­ia Communitie­s.”

This session will provide background material and concrete action steps for reducing the risk of future acts of violence within Pennsylvan­ia communitie­s. This will include covering protective factors that lead to resilience, strategies to reduce risk factors for violence using these factors, and the power of public policies to promote safe communitie­s.

Dr. Berman will be joined by presenters Dr. Machelle Madsen Thompson, a trauma counselor and research and teaching faculty member at Florida State University College of Social Work; attorney Stacie LeBlanc, the cofounder of the Up Institute and president of American Profession­al Society of Abuse on Children (APSAC); and Donna Greco, director of Public Policy and Legislativ­e Affairs for the Pennsylvan­ia Coalition Against Rape (PCAR).

The webinars will include a 90-minute presentati­on and up to 30 minutes for question and answers, to allow interactio­n between the presenters and participan­ts in real time.

To register for webinars, visit https://www.npeiv. org/webinar-trainings. For more informatio­n, can contact Dr. Berman at or by phone at 724-427-5566.

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