Man to Run from Lexington to Frankfort for Dating Violence Bill
Josh Nadzam, former University of Kentucky track athlete, is on a mission and he’s running to prove it.
Nadzam will run from Lexington to Frankfort on Thursday, March 6, to raise awareness and support of Kentucky House Bill 8, the proposed legislation to protect victims of intimate partner abuse in dating relationships.
This is a one-man run to improve Kentucky’s response to the needs of dating violence victims; currently, Kentucky is the only state without such protection, Nadzam said. And while he acknowledges the run is going to be difficult, he said it is “nothing compared to the difficulties experienced by victims and survivors of dating violence in Kentucky.”
HB 8, sponsored by Judiciary Chairman John Tilley, would amend Kentucky’s current law governing domestic protective orders to include victims of dating violence who have not lived or had a child together. Similar legislation was proposed in past years but failed to become law. This January, HB 8 unanimously cleared the House Judiciary Committee, but advocates fear the proposed legislation will again face challenges in the Senate.
“I believe so many Kentuckians support civil protections for dating partners but just aren’t aware of the challenges advocates and legislators have faced trying to make this bill law,” says Nadzam. “I’m hoping my run to Frankfort gets people talking and calling on our elected officials for support.”
“I was really inspired when Josh proposed his idea to run to Frankfort in support of the bill,” says Darlene Thomas, the executive director of GreenHouse17, the organization where Nadzam works. “Here’s a young man willing to make a tremendous effort for something he believes in, and that’s worthy of our support.”
Josh hopes Kentuckians will show their support for HB 8 by making a donation for every mile he will run. Contributions will go directly to GreenHouse17 to provide services and advocacy for victims of intimate partner violence. He has created an Indiegogo campaign to accept donations. It can be found here.
“I’m a runner. So, I’m running because these protections are really needed here in Kentucky,” says Nadzam. “But everyone can do something. After all, if we are aware of injustices and don’t do anything, then we are contributing to those injustices as passive bystanders.”
From Greenhouse 17 via KY Forward