WEST CHESTER, PA — Bell Atlantic Mobile, a corporate leader in the fight against domestic violence, and Motorola today announced the donation of 100 wireless phones and 100 wireless voice mail boxes to several domestic violence organizations located throughout Chester and Delaware counties. In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, State Representative Elinor Taylor and West Chester Mayor Clifford DeBaptiste joined Bell Atlantic Mobile at a press conference held at The Working Wardrobe's office in West Chester, PA, to help announce this newest effort to aid in the fight against domestic violence.
Today's donation is the local component of the company's national initiative. Earlier in October, Bell Atlantic Mobile and Motorola marked the start of Domestic Violence Awareness Month by announcing the donation of 2500 wireless phones to domestic violence support organizations throughout the Company's service area. This is the most extensive domestic violence assistance program ever spearheaded by the wireless service provider.
"Domestic violence is a very real problem that is not diminishing despite significant drops in crime rates in this country. And while it's often swept under the rug, domestic violence affects our neighbors, friends, and co-workers in ways unimaginable," said John Stratton, Bell Atlantic Mobile's Philadelphia region president.
"Through our Wireless At Work initiative, we have put essential communications tools in the hands of thousands of victims who need a vital link to emergency services at times of crisis. In addition, by helping to raise awareness, we can help our friends and co-workers recognize the symptoms and play an active role in both prevention and the life rebuilding process," said Stratton.
The donated Motorola phones will be used by domestic violence agencies to provide victims with a means of contacting the police 24-hours a day, 7- days a week. The voice mail boxes will allow individuals staying at domestic violence shelters with a confidential way to receive messages from potential employers, friends and family, and to begin to rebuild their lives without the fear of having an abuser learn of their whereabouts. Participating agencies include the Domestic Violence Center, Friend's Association, New Choices/New Options and the Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County Safe House.
"By providing women who live in fear with a free wireless phone -- complete with a battery and charger, and equipped to dial 9-1-1 at the touch of a button -- Bell Atlantic Mobile is giving them a tool that not only can provide some peace of mind, but could also save their lives," said Abby Siegel, board member and co-founder of The Working Wardrobe. "At The Working Wardrobe, we are thrilled to be able to once again partner with Bell Atlantic Mobile and help bring attention to this important cause."
Since 1995, Bell Atlantic Mobile's Wireless At Work program has provided over 8,000 wireless phones to programs, arming thousands of victims with emergency communications tools.
This October, Bell Atlantic Mobile is teaming with the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA) to contribute to the "Call to Protect" program. Under the "Call To Protect" program, CTIA members will donate over 11,000 wireless phones to victims. Bell Atlantic Mobile's contribution of 2,500 phones is one of the largest among wireless carriers in the CTIA's nationwide efforts.
Bell Atlantic Mobile owns and operates the largest wireless network in the East and systems in the Southwest, covering 180,000 square miles, and the largest chain of retail outlets devoted exclusively to wireless voice, data and paging. Based in Bedminster, NJ, Bell Atlantic Mobile has 6.6 million customers and 8,000 employees from Maine to Georgia and in parts of Arizona, New Mexico and west Texas. Through its "Wireless at Work..." community service program, the company uses its technology to help individuals and communities improve security and emergency communications. Bell Atlantic Mobile's parent, Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE:BEL) is one of the world's largest wireless communications companies, with domestic operations in 25 states and international investments in Mexico, Europe and the Pacific Rim. For more information on Bell Atlantic Mobile visit: www.bam.com; on global operations visit: www.bellatlantic.com/worldwide.