It was wonderful how the world of Derby reacted to the terrible event that almost destroyed Lori Milkeris life.
They responded by the thousands from all over the world, giving help, support, fund-raising and staying a support group all along for this victim of a horrible beating that came close to killing her. For the few who don’t know the story, please see my post “I like Women” and go to Lori Aid 2011 on Facebook.
Lori has gone through months of surgery, rehabilitation and mental anguish. She has children to support and a life to live: working toward her Masters degree in social work and just getting her life together.
This week she returned to her classes. She is still haunted but is mostly very positive about life; she couldn’t wait to get back to skating.
And who administered this beating? someone she loved and to whom she had entrusted herself and her family.
Unfortunately this type of abuse is all too common. And many of the Roller Derby leagues currently support women’s shelters. Lori and I have never spoken, although we exchange messages on Facebook, and a few days ago we kind of concurred on a program.
What if there were an organization, kind of Roller Derby’s MADD, or Susan B. Komen that was aimed at focusing on abuse. And although she didn’t suggest it, it would be named after Lori.
And all Roller Derby Leagues worldwide (as of today, 1030) had the opportunity to be part of it. Keep it loose, but have it set up so that all organizations (WFTDA, MADE, OSDA, WORD, etc) endorse it and create a basic outline for each league to get instructions on how to recognize when it is happening, help each other, and outreach to the community.
And speaking crassly, what a great PR program to further educate the public that Roller Derby today is not about fighting, hair pulling but a real empowerment of those who skate it.
Now that is as far as we went. Who out there is willing to step in and help organize. The irony is that Lori would actually be a very active participant, using her own experience and what she is training for to be “chairman”. And we need those of you who are trained in the field of psychology, psychiatry, medicine, counseling, teaching or just life to be on the “board”.
All right, Lori’s girls (and boys). Time to step up to the plate.