U.S. Senator Biden and Bell Atlantic Mobile Join to Help Domestic Violence Victims

U.S. Senator Biden and Bell Atlantic Mobile
Join to Help Domestic Violence Victims

State's First Wireless Phone Recycling Drive Coincides with
Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October 11, 1999


Pam Boyd,
Bell Atlantic Mobile

(856) 642-6226

Margaret Aitken,
U.S. Senator Biden's Office

(302) 573-6345

WILMINGTON, DE -- In conjunction with Domestic Violence Awareness
U.S. Sen. Joseph R. Biden, Jr. and Bell Atlantic Mobile today launched
the first
state-wide wireless phone recycling program aimed at helping victims of
domestic violence stay safe. To help jump-start the drive, Bell Atlantic
Mobile is teaming with Motorola to donate 100 wireless phones.

Bell Atlantic Mobile's "Wireless at Work" Phone Recycling
Program will allow wireless phone users throughout Delaware to donate
their unused older model cellular phones at drop-off sites. Bell Atlantic
Mobile will reprogram these phones to dial 9-1-1 only, before they are
distributed to victims of domestic violence.

The drive begins today and runs through November 15. Phones will be
collected at the offices of Sen. Biden and then distributed through the
Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence to direct service programs
in Delaware.

"Last year in Delaware, nearly 2,000 women were issued Protection
From Abuse orders and about 560 women and children sought refuge in
one of our state's three battered women shelters," said Sen. Biden.
"But sadly, as we have seen time and time again, a stay-away order
does not always keep an abuser away. Thanks to this cell phone recycling
program, victims of domestic violence will be armed with a direct link to
emergency police services - - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I have no
doubt that these cell phones will save lives. So, we are sending out a call
to the people of Delaware to recycle their old, used cell phones for this

Donated phones must be portable models in working condition and
include batteries and chargers. Phones, batteries and chargers must be
placed in bags or boxes before drop-off.

"Our business is about helping people communicate anytime,
anywhere, and for women who are trying to safeguard against an abuser,
communication takes on even greater significance," said John
Stratton, regional president for Bell Atlantic Mobile. "With a 9-1-1
phone in hand, victims have a vital, reliable link to emergency service in
times of crisis."

"We're excited to be part of this program and hope that Delaware
residents donate their unused cell phones to help keep victims of domestic
violence safe," said Carol Post, executive director of the Delaware
Coalition Against Domestic Violence. "These
9-1-1 phones are an invaluable resource for victims who are in immediate

Bell Atlantic Mobile has been a corporate leader in the fight against
domestic violence. Since 1995, the company's "Wireless at
Work" program has provided more than 8,000 wireless phones to
programs, arming thousands of victims with emergency communications
tools. And this month, the company teamed with Motorola to donate
2,500 phones throughout its service area, including today's donation in

The Family Violence Prevention Fund reports that women are the targets
physical abuse in the U.S. every nine seconds, and 42 percent of women
murdered in this country are killed by their husband or boyfriend. The
Domestic Violence Coordinating Council cites these alarming statistics
about domestic violence in its 1998 annual report:

  • Domestic violence comprises nearly one-third of the violent
    crime that occurs in Delaware.

  • In 1998, there were 16,030 reported criminal domestic violence
    - 1,960 Protection From Abuse Orders were issued in
    Family Court -- an increase of 649 orders from 1995.

    - In the same year, a total of 561 women & children state-
    wide were housed in battered women's shelters and 3,612
    calls were received by the shelter hotlines.

Phones are being collected at Sen. Biden's offices in:

  • Wilmington (844 King Street)
  • Dover (1101 Federal Building, 300 South New Street)
  • Georgetown (Georgetown Professional Park, Suite 108, 600
    North Dupont Highway)

For information on how to become a sponsored agency, contact Bell
Mobile's Recycling Coordinator at (215) 880-0462.

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.