County, City and State Officials United with the Rochester/Monroe County Domestic Violence Consortium to launch DV Awareness Month
Willow Center displays 1,000 purple flags to represent the nearly 5,000 survivors who have sought help since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic
Thursday, October 1, 2020, Rochester, N.Y. – Monroe County Executive Adam Bello and Dr. Daniele Lyman-Torres, City of Rochester Commissioner of Recreation and Youth Services with support from Senator Joseph Robach, 56th District and Sarah Clark, Acting State Director for U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand issued a join proclamation declaring October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Lisa Butt, Chair of the Rochester/Monroe County Domestic Violence Consortium and President and CEO for the Society of Protection and Care of Children stated, “October is our month – we will turn everything purple, and work together to draw attention to this critically important issue that impacts so many in our community. In so many ways, Monroe County is doing this right, we are a model for other communities across the state and across the country.”
Willow Domestic Violence Center’s President and CEO Meaghan de Chateauvieux and the Rochester/Monroe County Domestic Violence Consortium released the 2019 Monroe County Domestic Violence Report to the Community.
The report includes the following data:
- 5,355 reports of domestic violence made last year in Monroe County – reports by law enforcement agencies in 4 categories: aggravated assault, simple assault, sex offense and order of protection violation.
- 43,395 calls were made to Monroe County 9-1-1 dispatch last year that were classified as domestic disputes – down 11% from 2018.
- 4 domestic violence homicides in Monroe County last year.
- Monroe County rates of domestic violence are 1.8 times the statewide rate, excluding NYC.
- The city of Rochester rates are 3.8 times the statewide rate, and the second highest they’ve been in 8 years, coming in just under 2018 rates.
- 3,555 petitions for orders of protection were filed in Family Court, above the 10-year average of 3,300, with 1,052 final orders of protection granted.
- Willow Center’s 24/7 Hotline had 6,900 calls.
“This is only one piece of the full picture. These numbers reflect those who feel safe coming forward to call Willow Center and trust that we will fully support them,” says Meaghan de Chateauvieux, Willow’s President and CEO. “Since the pandemic began, Willow has seen an increase in the number and the intensity of calls to our 24/7 Hotline. In April and again in July, our Hotline numbers spiked – sometimes up to as many as 45 calls in one day, more than doubling typical call volume.”
To bring awareness to the increased the levels of danger experienced by many survivors throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Willow Center has displayed 1,000 purple flags on the front lawn of the Strong-Todd House. Each flags represents five of the nearly 5,000 domestic violence survivors who have sought help through Willow Center’s 24/7 Hotline since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March. For those in abusive relationships isolated by social distancing measures, home may not be a safe place.
Anyone needing support, please call Willow Center’s 24/7 Hotline at (585) 222-SAFE (7233) or by text at 348-SAFE. For information about October events to raise awareness and funds to support services for survivors, visit https://willowcenterny.org/
For the complete 2019 Monroe County Domestic Violence Report to the Community, event images and livestream footage, visit http://bit.ly/willowmediakit.
ABOUT WILLOW CENTER
Founded in 1979, Willow Domestic Violence Center has provided comprehensive domestic violence services for the Greater Rochester community for over 40 years, reaching a yearly average of 7,000 survivors of domestic violence. The organization provides a full continuum of free and confidential services, without judgement, including a 24/7 hotline, emergency shelter, counseling, court advocacy, case management, prevention outreach and training.
About Rochester/Monroe County (DVC)
The Rochester/Monroe County Domestic Violence Consortium is a unified organization leading an inclusive, collaborative community response to domestic violence. The Consortium promotes safety for victims, survivors and their families; ensures offender accountability; and fosters community awareness.
Members in attendance included Bivona Child Advocacy Center’s Executive Director Deb Rosen, Rochester Police Department’s Coordinator of Victims Services Patricia Huntington-Sigel, Monroe County’s Chief of the Domestic Violence Bureau William Gargan, Lifespan of Greater Rochester’s President and CEO Ann Marie Cook, RESOLVE of Greater Rochester’s Interim CEO Mary Whittier, and Deaf IGNITE’s Susan Demers-McLetchie. For more information about DVC members, visit https://www.rmcdvc.org/dvc-members/.
The press release, event images, livestream footage and the 2019 Monroe County Domestic Violence Report to the Community can be viewed at http://bit.ly/willowmediakit