Alpha Kappa Alpha Chapter Tackles Domestic Abuse After Death of Two Members

In the beginning of 2014, Aleria Cyrus Reed was killed in a murder-suicide in Louisiana. Monica Butler Johnson was beaten to death about a year-and-a-half later, also in Louisiana. Both were killed at the hands of their estranged husbands and both were members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Last week, the Baton Rouge Nu Gamma Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha, held a candle light vigil honoring the victims of domestic abuse on the steps of the State Capitol. The observance also served as a time to discuss legislation and initiatives aimed ending domestic abuse, The Advocate reports.
“We will stand up. We will speak out against domestic violence,” said Jacqueline Nash Grant, chairwoman of Aleria's Promise, the chapter’s domestic violence initiative. “But we’re going to do it the right way. We’re going to join with law enforcement, who have pledged to help us.”

Reed’s death served as a wake-up call for the chapter, “If it can happen to her (Reed), it can happen to anyone,” Grant said.

State Rep. Patricia Smith, D-Baton Rouge, introduced new victim-protection laws passed by the state Legislature to the crowd. According the Smith the laws make it easier to obtain include housing protection and restraining orders.

“Our legislators have become more keenly aware of domestic violence and sexual assault,” Smith, survivor of domestic, said.

According to the chapter's website, Aleria’s Promise "envisions establishing and funding Promise House, a temporary refuge for displaced victims, while working to end community tolerance of domestic violence locally and beyond."

You can read more about the initiative here.

Photo: The Advocate/Patrick Dennis