Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Arlington County
Doorways for Women and Families, a nonprofit, community service organization that creates pathways out of homelessness, domestic violence and sexual assault leading to safe, stable and empowered lives, proudly announced today that October has been officially declared Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Arlington County.
The declaration was shared on October 6 at the Arlington County Courthouse during the Third Annual “Purple Out Courthouse” to mark Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Nearly 100 people clad in purple gathered to take part, including the Arlington Victim/Witness Program, Police and Sheriff’s Departments, Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, County Board, Circuit Court judges, County Clerk and other community members. Arlington County Board Member John Vihstadt shared the official proclamation following Arlington County Board Member Libby Garvey, who serves as Co-Chair to Arlington’s Project PEACE. Both leaders shared inspired and moving commitment to support our community in addressing the needs of survivors of abuse.
“I’m thrilled by the show of support for our purple out event,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos. “I’m particularly gratified by this proclamation because it recognizes that domestic violence is a community problem that requires a coordinated community response. My office is committed to continuing our partnership with Doorways for Women and Families and Arlington Project PEACE to address the needs of survivors and to educate the public.”
“Behind this momentous proclamation, there is much, much more,” said Doorways President and CEO Caroline Jones. “The impressive range in attendees today demonstrates our meaningful collaboration, the collective dedication to responding to survivors and, importantly, the growing value of the importance for our community to address the range of needs survivors face. Doorways is grateful to our many community partners for their support of women, men and children impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault.”
Last year, Doorways’ Domestic Violence Safehouse provided emergency shelter to 45 adults and 41 children escaping violence. Doorways’ Court Advocacy program helped 403 adults and children gain legal protections to ensure their safety. Calls to Doorways’ 24-Hour Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline increased by 53 percent over those received last year, and the hotline responded to 1,244 callers, impacting 2,012 adults and children.
“Given the increasing demand for our services, recognizing the growing need for support in our community is more critical than ever,” Jones said. “Doorways is grateful to all those who are taking part in recognizing October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Arlington to bring further attention to survivors’ multiple needs and the ongoing support, resources and teamwork required to address them.”
To learn more about how Doorways creates pathways out of homelessness, domestic violence and sexual assault leading to safe, stable and empowered lives, and to get involved, visit www.DoorwaysVA.org. If you or someone you know is being hurt by or fearful of their partner, please call Doorways’ 24-hour Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline at (703) 237-0881.
WHEREAS, domestic violence is a serious crime that affects people of all races, ages, gender, and income levels; and 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime; and
WHEREAS, domestic violence is widespread and affects over 4 million Americans each year; with one in three Americans having witnessed an incident of domestic violence; and
WHEREAS, children that grow up in violent homes are abused and neglected at a rate higher than the national average; and
WHEREAS, 2015 marks the 21th Anniversary of the Violence against Women Act (VAWA), groundbreaking legislation that comprehensively addresses domestic and sexual violence and stalking in our country; and since it was introduced, violence against family members and intimate partners in the United States has declined 67%; and reporting of such violence by both women and men has increased; and
WHEREAS, Arlington County has benefited from the establishment of a coordinated community response (Project PEACE) to violence that encourages victim safety and offender accountability; and Domestic Violence Awareness Month provides an excellent opportunity for citizens to learn more about preventing domestic violence and to show support for the numerous organizations and individuals who provide critical advocacy, services and assistance to victims;
NOW THEREFORE, I, Mary Hughes Hynes, Chair of the County Board of Arlington, do hereby proclaim October 2015, as
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH
in Arlington County, to honor people impacted by domestic violence and those in our community committed to ensuring a proactive and coordinated community response to domestic violence, and urge our residents to work together to eliminate domestic violence from our community.