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Let’s Do More Than Raise Awareness Of Domestic Violence

Society does a lot every October to raise awareness of domestic violence. There are walks. People wear purple. There are a plethora of newspaper editorials around the country. There will be public service announcements in local media and probably some sponsored posts in your Facebook feed.

Those things are all well and good, but we can all do more.

First, we should remember that domestic violence does not discriminate by gender, race, religion, culture or the size of a family’s checkbook. Nor does domestic violence manifest itself in only one way. It can be bruises and black eyes. It can also be yelling, humiliation, stalking, manipulation, coercion, threats and isolation. Sometimes, it shows up with constant monitoring of a partner’s online accounts or non-stop texting. Sometimes there’s no noise, just an icy silent treatment. And those who say words can’t hurt have obviously never been demeaned to the point you believe the things being said about you.

If you think someone — male or female — may be a victim of domestic violence reach out. Be a friend. Let them know you care and will help. Donate to the organizations that help domestic violence victims. The Salvation Army Anew Center will take all the help the community wants to give, and the UCAN Center is fundraising to start a women and children’s shelter that will help, among others, women who need a place to help put their lives back together. Consider volunteering if you are able.

And, for those who need them, call Project Crossroads at 483-7718 or the Salvation Army Anew Center at 661-3897 or 661-3894. Things can feel bleak for victims of domestic violence. Help is available. Make the call.

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