PITTSBURG — Domestic violence has no place in our community.
“I don’t believe it belongs anywhere for that matter,” said Sylvia Fultz, Safehouse Crisis Center victim and child advocate. “This is the community in which we live and there is a lot of that here. “We go to work each and every day for these women to help better educate them that it’s not okay, because a lot of times they fall into that trap and that’s just life and that’s just the way it’s supposed to be.”
According to a release from Safehouse Crisis Center, one in three women and one in four men are victims of some sort of physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
On Tuesday at the All Aboard Foundation Center, Safehouse hosted an event to mark the beginning of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. For the second year, the center is hosting Purple Light Nights, a national month-long campaign dedicated to aid in the reduction of violence and raise awareness of domestic violence. The campaign was created in Covington, Washington in 2007 and now reaches internationally.
“We found this campaign and the Downtown Advisory Board, the city of Pittsburg and many businesses and supporters have been really great in keeping this going,” said Ali Smith, Safehouse Crisis Center prevention education specialist. “This is not just to raise awareness, but to also make that statement that domestic violence has no place here and if we do see it that we will react and respond to it in an appropriate manner.”
In the Downtown Pittsburg area, residents may notice the purple lights wrapped around trees and in business store fronts.
“Those are representations of community members saying that domestic violence has no place in our community,” Smith said.
People may also notice the purple ribbon pins or stickers worn by various people in the community, including Crawford County Sheriff deputies.
“That is our way of supporting domestic awareness month,” Crawford County Sheriff Danny Smith said.
According to the sheriff, law enforcement see the side of domestic violence many people in the community don’t see and with the help of partnerships between various agencies — including Safehouse — everyone does what they can to help and inform victims of domestic violence.
“There’s partnerships throughout the whole thing,” he said. “We’re a part of it, but just like all of the work they [Safehouse] are doing, these partnerships are vital for anybody who is in a domestic situation … if we can help support that awareness, I can tell you on our side of it, we would love to see less and less domestic violence in our county.”
People can learn more about upcoming Safehouse Crisis Center events and training on its Facebook page at Safehouse Crisis Center, Inc.