In the Wake of Tragedy
It never stops...
... the phone keeps ringing. And with each ring comes another request for help or guidance. Or someone to talk to, someone in need. Each call tells us that the violence and the power and control, and the abuse never end.
The destruction of domestic violence and rape is deep, fracturing, disempowering, traumatizing, and dehumanizing.
Each year, we respond to between 550 and 600 calls for assistance through our 24 hour hotline. We get calls from neighbors, family members, other agencies, law enforcement, and, of course, victims themselves. Each caller is trying to find an answer to a pressing problem - where can she go, how can she get away, how can I get her to see how dangerous it is? Or from the victim... how will I survive, what if he finds me, how will I get there. But I love him when he isn't hurting me.
And between calls, we see evidence of the horrific, worst-case scenarios violence: children murdered, abuser suicides, women murdered, men murdered, workplace violence that started with domestic violence, animal abuse and scare tactics.
Does it happen here? Yes. It does.
No greater evidence that the terrible tragedies that have taken lives in Warren, Franklin, and Montgomery Counties in the last two years...
I am deep with grief over the most recent murders and tortures of local children.
Even as our hearts are heavy, the work continues. We work harder to address the causation of such personal and social destruction. We work for appropriate policies, develop effective interventions, and strengthen our safety measures and our capacity to provide safety planning with those we serve. We amp up efforts to educate and inform everyone from young children to seasoned policy-makers that the anti-violence arena is one we cannot afford to ignore or to defund.
Hope for peace at every level,
Ellen Reed, MPPA