October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is national domestic violence awareness month. Over 5,000 new cases of domestic violence were reported in the state just last year.

This year marks 30 years of Domestic Violence Awareness Months. And the reason why: to connect and unite individuals and organizations surrounding the issue. 

Janelle Moos; CAWS Executive Director: "In 2016 our 20 crisis centers served a little over 5000 victims of domestic violence."

Stan Stelter; Development Director: "They do need to reach out. That is so important because that's then the road to recovery and the road to hopefully a life that is without violence."

And 2/3 of victims who received help were physically abused.

Stan Stelter; Development Director: "There are people that come in here that show physical abuse and they are bruised or they have other kinds of marks that indicate that there has been abuse."

But many times, the obstacles a victim faces goes past the surface.

Stan Stelter; Development Director: "Often times it isn't the physical abuse that causes the real problems. It's the emotional."

Many times, domestic violence cases go unreported, which is why raising awareness is so important.

Janelle Moos; CAWS Executive Director: "You know, historically, domestic violence has been something people don't want to talk about, don't want to share. The reason for awareness months like domestic violence is to promote community involvement. It doesn't matter who you are, anyone can be a victim of domestic violence. What we want victims to know, as well as there families, there are communities that are willing to help."

Over the last 2 decades, 78% of female homicide victims have been a result of domestic violence. If you or someone you know is a victim of sexual or domestic violence, please call this number: (701) 255-6240. 

October 19th is "Purple Thursday." People are encouraged to wear purple to show support for survivors and for ending domestic violence. 

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