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Annual Stanton/Anthony conversations event to focus on domestic violence and health

October 2, 2015
Tasneem Ismailji and purple ribbon

In order to better understand domestic violence and the long-lasting effects it can have on people and the communities in which they live, the University of Rochester’s Susan B. Anthony Center will focus its 2015 Stanton/Anthony luncheon and conversations event on the widely discussed topic. The annual event will take place on Friday, Oct. 9 as part of the University’s Meliora Weekend and is one of several events in October held in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness month.

“In order to prevent intimate partner abuse, we need to understand the root of the problem,” says Catherine Cerulli, director of the Susan B. Anthony Center and the University’s Laboratory of Interpersonal Violence and Victimization (LIVV). “This includes the emotional, psychological, and physical aspects of the issue.” Cerulli says it is essential to look back at childhood experiences and family dysfunction, which is where adversity is often experienced first.

“Instead of thinking about the effects of intimate partner violence in an isolated kind of way, we need to look at it across the lifespan and across the developmental stages,” says Dr. Tasneem Ismailji, a pediatrician, educator, and researcher on the health effects of violence and abuse. She will be delivering this year’s keynote speech at the luncheon, titled, Intimate Partner Violence: An Update for Healthcare Professionals.

“Through this talk, I hope to change people’s mindset and perspective on this issue. Research shows that what happens when you’re young affects health outcomes, so in order to understand the effects of violence on health we need to think of experiences of abuse, adversity, poverty, racism, and more,” said Ismailji.

After completing her pediatric residency at the University of Rochester Medical Center in 1974, Ismailji went on to establish a successful practice in pediatric and adolescent medicine. In 2005, she co-founded the Academy on Violence and Abuse in Shakopee, Minnesota as a way to prevent, recognize, and treat people affected by violence. Having grown up in a patriarchal society in Pakistan, Ismailji said she often saw violence towards woman and children and the culture’s lack of accountability towards males. She believes this is what led her to “question social conventions and challenge assumptions towards violence and abuse.”

Joining Ismailji for this year’s conversations panel discussion are three other experts in the field of domestic violence. Dr. David Corwin, professor of pediatrics at the University of Utah School of Medicine; Dr. Dianne Morse, a physician, assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Rochester Medical Center, and director of Women’s Initiative Supporting Health-Transitions Clinic (WISH-TC); and Jamie Saunders, CEO of the Willow Domestic Violence Center of Greater Rochester.

The 2015 Stanton/Anthony Conversations will take place Friday, Oct. 9 at the Interfaith Chapel on the University of Rochester’s River Campus. The keynote speech and luncheon begin at noon on the river level of the Interfaith Chapel. Tickets are $45 for the general public and University faculty and staff, $20 for University students. Scholarships are available. To register, visit or call 275-8799. The panel discussion, which begins at 1:30 p.m. in the chapel’s sanctuary, is free and open to the public.

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Category: Society & Culture