It is nearing the end of October and many Southern Oregon University students have their minds on upcoming midterms, presentations, and Halloween activities. While we are all busy with our day to day lives, I just wanted to take note of another very important and concerning subject matter the month of October represents; domestic violence awareness.
Many concerned citizens around the country have been partaking in activities and events to help raise awareness of domestic violence, nationally and locally. These events are tied together with a united goal to raise awareness about the rate of recurrence and seriousness of this issue, and to raise funding for support groups, services, and prevention.
Domestic violence has affected nearly every person on the planet in some way or another. If we didnâ€™t witness or fall victim to domestic violence within our own home then we all know someone close to us who has. This has, hopefully, created an understanding that this is not just an issue of confidentiality or privacy, but also an issue of humanity. It is important that we honor those who have been victimized and show our support in any way that we know how.
Many local businesses have shown their support by placing cardboard cutouts of human figures at the front of their business symbolizing the victims of domestic violence who are no longer here to tell their stories. Upon these figures are the stories that they would have been able to tell if domestic violence had not taken their lives.
Raising awareness about domestic violence speaks to the abuser, saying that it will not be tolerated, and will not go unnoticed. Awareness also speaks to the victims, telling them that there is help out there and that they are not alone. The more awareness and support that we as human beings can muster, the more lives we can save.
Though the month is almost over, it isnâ€™t too late to get involved. You donâ€™t have to organize an event or donate your paycheck to help raise awareness. You can still do many things to show support. Send letters into The Siskiyou speaking out against domestic violence, talk to your friends about it, post it on your facebook status (in a copy and paste sort of approach), wear a purple t-shirt, or show your support by calling someone that you know who has survived it.
You may also choose to attend the candlelight vigil that is taking place from 6 – 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28th, at Alba Park in Medford. It is recommended you bring a flashlight or a candle.
If you have been associated with domestic violence in any way and would like to share your story or just accept support, or if you just want to provide the support, I encourage you to join this group of like-minded and safe individuals who are coming together to take a stand against violence.