VIC COLUMN: War on Women
Sometimes it feels like there is an all-out war on women in this country.
It mirrors the atrocities committed against women all over the world. Far from being “the weaker sex,” women have proven themselves to be capable leaders, accomplished scientists and stellar athletes. Yet, we always seem to run up on announcements or studies or news articles or proclamations by politicians that portray women as weak and unsuspecting.
Sisters, take back your power.
NCHSS Study Reveals States with Highest Rates of Female Workplace Homicides
April 1, 2019 — As workplace violence awareness month begins, the National Council for Home Safety and Security (NCHSS) has released a study that reveals the states with the highest rates of female workplace homicides per capita.
The study highlights that women were nearly three times more likely than men to suffer from homicide-related deaths in the workplace. Other insights, such as the age range most likely to be targeted and the methods most likely to be used in the killings were also noted.
The month these homicides were most likely to occur? April. States with the Highest Rate of Female Workplace Homicides per Capita:
Florida and Tennessee (tie)
Wisconsin and Alabama (tie)
**Part of this is because our “capita” is so low. Like Arkansas, South Carolina is something of a third world country when it comes to wage equity. Here, the very things that push wages up to respectable levels, labor unions, actually are illegal (alarms.org has the full states’ workplace violence list).
The data for this study comes from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and was collected between 2011 and 2017. It is important to note that the following states were not included due to missing or insufficient data: Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont and Wyoming.
About the National Council for Home Safety and Security: The National Council for Home Safety and Security (NCHSS) is a trade association comprised of companies in the security sector, including licensed alarm installers, contractors, and other relevant groups across the United States. Alarms.org (the official site of the NCHSS) offers essential home safety and security guides, industry-related research and reports.
Then, there is the “Uber murder” in Columbia.
Nathaniel David Rowland, 24, of New Zion in Clarendon County, has been arrested and charged with kidnapping and murder in the death of a young woman attending the University of South Carolina. Prosecutors will decide later if they will seek the death penalty.
Amid all the victim blaming (“she got into the wrong car”) and support for the man charged with murder, Rowland, (“he doesn’t have a criminal record”) some actually helpful suggestions have come forward.
A rideshare platform sent this announcement: Last Friday, University of South Carolina student Samantha Josephson was (allegedly) murdered after she got into a car that she though was her Uber.
Anjin Secure Car, a business unit of The Guidry Group, is a rideshare platform that provides safe and secure rides. Currently focused on places in the world with the most risk like Latin America, Anjin will launch in select U.S. cities next year. Anjin offered these tips for those who use rideshare services nationwide:
1. Only meet up with the rideshare driver in a place you are comfortable. Move the pickup location to the brightest, highest trafficked location. If this means you have to walk a block to be in front of a restaurant or coffee shop, do it.
2. Travel in groups. 99% of criminal acts are on targets of opportunity. Even criminals with guns are likely to forgo robbing or assaulting two people, no matter their stature or perceived lack of threat.
3. Only approach a vehicle if it meets the description on the app, including license plate number, and make the driver verify who they are there to pick up. "Are you my Lyft driver?" is not a verification.
4. If you are alone, call someone and talk to them the entire trip. You are conveying to the driver that any action they take will get reported to someone and reported quickly. You are trying to introduce as much risk into the equation for the criminal as possible.
Anjin passengers are given photographs of the driver, vehicle and license plate. The company instructs customers to initiate giving the name and drop-off location as opposed to the common “are you here to pick up Sally/Bill/Ted?” Soon, the company will also have pin code and facial recognition in their mobile app and will allow passengers to find their drivers – even in a sea of vehicles that all look exactly the same.
The cost will be just 2-3 times that of low cost focused rideshare services. In my opinion, well worth the peace of mind especially when someone needs a ride late at night. For this price, riders will be driven by the same security experts that protect Fortune 500 CEOs.
There is a bill in the legislature requiring a Uber and Lyft car to have a lighted sign. As is mostly the case with the South Carolina General Assembly, it’s the least they can do in the protection of women.
Vic MacDonald is editor of The Clinton Chronicle. The views expressed here are his and do not necessarily reflect those of The Chronicle. MacDonald can be reached at 833-1900 or firstname.lastname@example.org