Michelle Bart is surprised at the low registration numbers for the upcoming No More National Anti-Violence Summit. The topics being addressed at the conference seem particularly relevant given the recent political climate, said Bart, who heads the Vancouver-based National Women’s Coalition Against Violence and Exploitation.
“We started 2017 with a terrorist attack. Violence is out there, and we can’t ignore it,” she said, referring to the Istanbul nightclub attack that killed 39 people during New Year’s celebrations. “We can definitely prevent violence in our own communities and families, but we’ve got to do it together.”
The conference has been held annually since 2009 and is always on Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. The location, however, has alternated between Portland, Vancouver and Southern California.
Last year, more than 200 people attended the conference — called the Southwest Conference Against Trafficking — in San Bernardino, Calif., three weeks after the Dec. 2 mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center that killed 14 people and wounded 22 others. The 2 1/2 -day conference was swept by the FBI, Bart said.
This year’s conference is at the Hilton Vancouver Washington on Jan. 12 and 13. The coalition against violence is partnering with YWCA Clark County and the No More Campaign to hold the conference. Speakers and workshops will cover topics such as human trafficking, sexual assault, domestic violence and policing in America.
For more information or to register for the No More National Anti-Violence Summit, visit www.nomoresummit.org or call 360-852-8019. Registration ends Friday.
Among the speakers is state Rep. Sharon Wylie, D-Vancouver, who will talk about surviving spousal domestic violence and sexual assault. Lt. Scott Creager, who retired from the Vancouver Police Department and now works for the Port of Portland Police Department, will talk about policing in America and Blue Courage.
“People want to hear what they can do in their own communities and that’s really good,” Bart said.