Besides the love of his 1½-year-old daughter and his girlfriend, Cpl. Arthur Grinage said he’d like to enjoy a steak dinner to celebrate Father’s Day on Sunday, June 19.
Grinage, who works for the Prince George’s County Office of the Sheriff and turns 32 on June 25, joined hundreds of others to sign their names on placards and pledge to become stronger role models for their families, children and the community.
“In being a man, you are taught your word is your bond,” said Grinage, who received a community service award Monday, June 13.
“My dad instilled in me that if you say something, then you have to do it,” he said. “I want to instill that in my daughter and spread it to the community.”
The Father’s Day pledge, led by the sheriff’s office, the county’s Department of Family Services and the Commission on Fathers, Men & Boys, focuses on eradicating domestic violence.
Placards inside the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 112 in Upper Marlboro displayed the pledge: “I promise to maintain relationships that are based on respect, equality, trust, communication and honesty.”
Another part of the vow: “I pledge to never engage in any type of abuse – physical, emotional, sexual, financial or digital.”
According to a 2020 report from the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence, Prince George’s led the state with 12 domestic violence-related deaths.
Grinage, who works in the sheriff’s domestic violence division, said the office normally receives between two to 20 calls each day dealing with verbal arguments and physical altercations.
Lewis, the father of a 1½-year-old son, said he plans to take the pledge and placard idea to Annapolis and “challenge all my colleagues in the General Assembly.”
“We’ve been trying to tackle this surge in gun violence but we also need to do more as it relates to stopping domestic violence,” he said. “We are at a turning point.”
David Miller, a Baltimore native who now lives in D.C. and counts as the author of “Dare To Be King: What if the Prince Lives. A Survival Workbook for African American Males,” offered advice to men on how to combat domestic violence and human trafficking, including:
- Re-socialize and redefine what it means to be a responsible and spiritually-guided man.
- Reach out to five to 10 men in your network and offer encouragement.
- Talk about mental and physical health (his 55-year-old brother died of cancer in March 2021 “and we didn’t know about it.”)
- Review finances including purchasing life insurance as opposed to creating a Go Fund Me account to pay for funeral expenses after a loved one dies.
“We need to move beyond talking. I think we talk too much. We need to move toward action,” said Miller, the father of two daughters, founder of Dare To Be King Project and a doctoral candidate at Morgan State University in Baltimore.
For more information on family services or domestic violence resources, call 301-265-8401.