October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a time for the community to come together and build awareness and help with the movement towards safe and healthy relationships for all individuals and families. Domestic violence touches every person in our community and society as a whole; it violates a person’s dignity, safety, and basic human rights.
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was passed nearly 20 years ago and as a society we have greatly enhanced our awareness and response to domestic violence. Prior to passage of the VAWA, domestic violence was often seen as a private matter best hidden behind closed doors. But now, to quote President Obama in his recent proclamation “We have changed our laws, transformed our culture, and improved support services for survivors. We have seen a significant drop in domestic violence homicides and improved training for police, prosecutors, and advocates. Yet we must do more to provide protection and justice for survivors and to prevent violence from occurring. During National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we stand with domestic abuse survivors, celebrate our Nation’s progress in combating these despicable crimes, and resolve to carry on until domestic violence is no more”.
But still, one in four women and one in seven men in the United States still suffer physical violence at the hands of an intimate partner at least once during their lifetimes. Every day, three women lose their lives in this country as a result of domestic violence. Millions of Americans live in daily, silent fear within their own homes.
You probably didn’t know this but while Dr. Soteres was playing professional soccer and preparing for medical school he also spearheaded the effort to start a Rape Crisis Center in Chattanooga, TN, his hometown. He spent 3 years researching crisis centers around the south and created a fund-raising board. Ultimately they raised $800,000 to fund the center for three years. After that it was picked up by the United Way and other domestic services. The Chattanooga Rape Crisis and Resource Center is still in operation today.
At Asthma & Allergy Associates, PC we support those who are victims of domestic violence and rape. So help us spread awareness of this issue! Make a donation to a fund in your community today or just educate someone near and dear to you about this movement so they don’t become a victim themselves. The staff at AACOS thanks you for your efforts!