The rates of Domestic Violence in Monroe County are more than 2x the rest of NYS. That’s double. DOUBLE. And on top of that, as a community, we are not talking about it. We look the other way. None of this is okay.
Our need to understand why this is the case led us to two truths about domestic violence. First, it’s not always violent. There are many forms of abuse used to control, harm and imprison a survivor. By only focusing on physical violence, we ignore the many other forms and the many other signs that there is an abusive relationship. The second truth: domestic violence feeds on silence. For the survivor, that silence is a coping mechanism. But for the community, silence means choosing not to get involved. Not to stand up and show your support for a family member, friend or colleague. This campaign needed to change that.
We needed to make sure every survivor knows that Willow is there for them. At any time, for any reason. And we needed our community to realize it’s time to take a stand. To talk about domestic violence with kids, with family, with friends and with colleagues.
The core idea for the campaign came from the realization that tiny words can do major harm. These are small words we use to diminish something, to ignore it, to hide it, to lessen the impact. Just. Only. A little. Kind of.
But there is no such thing as a just a little abuse. It’s only name-calling? It’s name-calling. All abuse, all forms, all amounts, are dangerous and completely unacceptable. It’s time we talk about it.
“The Abuse is Abuse campaign is POWERFUL, it is UNIQUE and it WILL help us as a community to talk about what can be most uncomfortable.”
– Jaime Saunders, Willow President & CEO