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Committee OKs Plans For Domestic Violence Awareness Events

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OSWEGO – At its meeting Tuesday, the Physical Services Committee helped fight back against domestic violence.

Mayor Billy Barlow received a request from Sara Carmichael, Service to Aid Families Advocate with Oswego County Opportunities. They would like to use a portion of Breitbeck Park during the month of October in order to place a display in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The Breitbeck site was selected because it will provide more visibility for the campaign, she said.

Communities and victim service providers across the country will host events and campaigns next month. The goal, she said, is to raise awareness of the epidemic of domestic violence in the community and educate people on the impact of domestic violence, she explained.

She also requested the exterior lights at City Hall be turned purple for the month of October as part of New York State;s “Shine the Light” campaign.

The campaign’s goal is to show the community that the first step in ending domestic violence “is to bring it out of the darkness.”

The Silent Witness and Survivor Flag Display will be erected in Breitbeck Park.

It consists of 550 minitaure purple flags placed in tghe ground along with two yard signs explaining that each flag represents a victim or survivor who was served by SAF in 2017.

The flags will be placed around three red life-sized wooden statues, which represents the victims in the county who suffer in silence, she told the committee.

A short narative is attached to the statues to provide information.

Members of SAF will be responsible for the set up and take down of the display. They will also monitor the display to ensure no vandalism takes place, Carmichael told the committee.

This is the 31st anniversary of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

In the last three decades, much progress has been made to support domestic violence victims and survivors, to hold abuser accountable and to create and update legislation to further those goals.

According to national statistics, 1 in 4 women in the U.S. will experience domestic violence and every 9 seconds, a woman is beaten or assaulted by an intimate partner or spouse.

Additionally, domestic violence represents a substantial number of calls received by police.

Oswego County Opportunities Services to Aid Families program is the domestic violence and rape crisis program serving Oswego County and has provided crisis, supportive, advocacy and educational services throughout Oswego County for more than 30 years.

If you or someone you know is a victim or survivor of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence or stalking, call the Crisis Hotline at (315) 342-1600. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and is free and confidential.

The committee gave a favorable recommendation to the request.