Elkhart names October 'Domestic Violence Awareness Month'

  • In US
  • 2022-09-30 04:01:00Z
  • By Goshen News, Ind.

Sep. 30-ELKHART - In conjunction with the YWCA, Elkhart Mayor Rod Roberson met Wednesday at Safe Haven Women's Shelter to recognize Domestic Violence Awareness Month officially in Elkhart.

Since 1989, October has been National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. With his statement, Roberson added Elkhart to the growing list of cities partnering against domestic violence nationwide.

"It's not people that you don't know," Roberson said. "It's people in my office, or my family members or my friends. I do know specifically people who have been victims of domestic violence and they are still unraveling the repercussions of it."

It's estimated that every minute across the United States there are 20 people being physically abused by an intimate partner, Tybon said.

"I think a lot of people are not aware of how prevalent domestic violence is," said Susan Tybon, President and CEO of YWCA North Central Indiana.

One in four women and one in seven men are estimated to be victims of physical abuse at some point in their life. For other types of abuse including financial, psychological, or verbal, the number is one in three women and one in six men.

"I think it's important as you unpack those numbers that the acute levels of domestic abuse is only the start," Roberson said. "The real piece is the work that's done on the side once it's been acknowledged or someone reports it and it now becomes (about) how we unravel it as we bring healing to the victims."

Domestic violence affects the children of couples, as well as other people involved in the couple's life. Tybon hopes that bringing awareness to the prevalence of the issue will help create solutions.

"We really want to use the month of October to increase awareness and people talking about domestic violence in an attempt to reduce some of the stigmas that is still unfortunately associated with domestic violence," Tybon said.

The YWCA is offering Michiana residents several ways to do that. One simple option is simply wearing purple, the color identified for domestic violence awareness. Participants or supporters can wear purple clothing, ribbons, hair color, nails, or even get a purple ribbon car magnet available through the YWCA to show their support for domestic violence awareness month.

"There's also a lot of other things you can do," Tybon added. "You can donate to the cause of domestic violence (awareness). You can throw an event. You can send out emails to family and friends or your workplace."

The YWCA also has posters that can be hung in restrooms at workplaces, restaurants, and other public venues. Each poster has a collection of informational cards along with it, so people that enter the spaces who are in need of help can through the YWCA. Contact the YWCA to be sent a free poster or car magnet.

"It's important for us to all understand how we can be a part of the answer or the solution," Roberson said. "I think it's important not just for our administration or our cities to recognize this, but for our neighborhood associations and our blocks. The people that are inside of communities and residences should also have an acute awareness of how this is impacting our cities. Inside our neighborhoods, you can be just as critical, making sure that you have a keen eye and that you are getting involved when it's time for you to do so."

For more information and ways to get involved, visit www.ywcancin.org.

Dani Messick is the education and entertainment reporter for The Goshen News. She can be reached at dani.messick@goshennews.com or at 574-538-2065.


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