CEDAR BLUFF, Va. (WVVA) – National Domestic Violence Awareness Month started in October 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
In Tazewell County, local agencies are working to make sure domestic violence victims are being cared for.
In partnership with Clinch Valley Community Action, Cedar Bluff Police Department is accepting pajama donations until October 28. Victoria Bartfai, Administration Assistant at CBPD, says this is an opportunity to reach out to those in need.
“They (victims) often don’t have access to them (pajamas/hygiene items) if they’re trying to flee their situation,” says Bartfai.
According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline website, on average 24 people per minute are victims of domestic violence or sexual abuse. In 2012, the CDC reported more than 17,000 domestic violence crimes in Virginia. West Virginia reported more than 12,000 domestic violence crimes in 2010.
As stated on the NDVH website, all abuse do not look the same. Many warning signs often develop over the course of a relationship. Bartfai says that some abusive relationships see a ‘honeymoon phase’ when a partner promises the incident won’t happen again.
But this could bring up the ‘why can’t you leave’ question.
“There are people with pets or children that really feel like they can’t get out of a situation because there are often other circumstances,” says Barfai.
She says that the best thing a family member or friend can do, is express that you care.
In the Two Virignias’ there are several locations for domestic violence victims. For Tazewell County, Clinch Valley Community Action in Tazewell, is open M-F 8-4:30.
In West Virginia 3rd Congressional District: Family Refuge Center (Lewisburg), SAFE (Welch), and Women’s Resource Center (Beckley).
The number for the National Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).