Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. As a local law firm and one that handles cases involving domestic violence, we unfortunately see many cases of domestic violence. Over the years of practicing law I have noticed that domestic violence occurs across all socioeconomic categories and race. It is not a crime that only affects minorities or the poor. It is truly a societal problem.
To be clear, awareness of this problem has increased over the years. Gone are the days when this was looked at as a family problem that law enforcement does not involve themselves with or make arrests. However, our community has a long way to go. Orange County statistics show a year over year increase in total domestic violence incidents from 2012-2014. In Orange County, according to the statistics of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, between 2013 and 2014 the domestic violence murder rate stayed consistent at 16, however there was a 20% increase in forcible rape. There was also an increase of almost 8% in Aggravated Assault.
Awareness of domestic violence may not cure this problem but it has the potential to help victims. In Orange County there are a number of events during this month including Harbor House’s Purple Door Breakfast and the University of Central Florida Victim Services’ Light up the Night.
In our view this issue needs two things, one AWARENESS and two, money. Take a look at the statistics from FDLE that we have made available on our website. Seeing just how prevalent this problem is in our community has prompted us try in our own small way to increase awareness. That is why Moses and Rooth Attorneys at Law will donate $1.00 to Harbor House for every additional like we get on our Facebook Page during the month of October* . So go ahead and like our page and go ahead and share this article to raise awareness of this plague on our society and we will make a donation to help domestic violence victims.
For those of you who are not familiar with Harbor House, they are a domestic violence victim advocacy organization. They provide critical services to survivors of domestic violence and also educate the community regarding domestic violence. In 2014 harbor house provided:
• 521 adults and 502 children in shelter
• 368 adults served though one of their outreach programs
• 4,719 survivors served by one of the justice programs (assistance in filing injunctions, attending court hearings, etc.)
• 9,065 calls were serviced by their hotline
• 37 pets were placed in shelters
• 1,161 people were trained on how to recognize domestic abuse, respond to a survivor, and refer to an agency for help
There are quite a few wonderful domestic violence victim social services available in the Central Florida area. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence direct them to anyone of these worthy organizations:
1. Harbor House- 407-883-2856
2. UCF Victim Services
3. Safe House of Seminole– 407-330-3933
4. Coalition for the Homeless Victims Program- 407-425-2502
5. Victim Service Center– 407-497-6701
6. The Healing Tree- 407-843-4357
7. Department of Children and Families– 800-962-2873
This October, as a community we can increase Domestic Violence Awareness and hopefully start to put an end to this problem.
* MAX DONATION $500
Authored by Jay R. Rooth