Kewaunee County Sheriff Matt Joski credits local organizations like the Violence Intervention Project for a dip in the homicide rate in domestic abuse incidents. There were 37 such instances last year in Wisconsin, compared to 40 in 2017. VIP helps domestic violence victims gain a voice when they may be too fearful to speak out otherwise. Joski says that kind of advocacy is saving lives.
According to Joski, VIP served 125 women, 24 men, and 49 children affected by domestic abuse.
FROM SHERIFF MATT JOSKI
The month of October is recognized as National Domestic Abuse awareness month. This is truly a global issue whose victims walk among us every day. Domestic abuse is defined as the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault or other abusive behavior as part of a systemic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. While most of us associate domestic abuse with physical abuse, other forms include psychological and emotional abuse.
It is reported that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of some form of physical violence by an intimate partner within their lifetime. On average nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner, which over a year’s time equates to 10 million women and men.
Here in Wisconsin during 2018 there were 37 Domestic Abuse homicide incidents which resulted in 38 deaths, and yet less than half of all domestic violence incidents are reported to law enforcement. This compares to 40 Domestic Abuse Homicides in 2017 resulting in 45 deaths.
Sadly, domestic abuse is the number one cause of birth defects. More than all other medical causes combined.
In all of this tragedy there is good news. We have organizations and individuals working tirelessly to put an end to domestic violence by being the voice of the victims. They are ready to serve as advocates for those who fear to speak for themselves. In 2018 our very own Kewaunee County Violence Intervention Project served 125 women, 24 men and 49 children that were domestic violence victims.
To commemorate this month’s awareness, and to support those affected by domestic violence here in Kewaunee County, the Violence Intervention Project will be holding a lighting ceremony at Grace Lutheran Church on October 29th at 6:00 P.M. This has become an annual tradition of support and sharing, and all members of our community are welcome to attend. We will be lighting candles in remembrance of those who have lost their lives to domestic violence and will be joined by a guest speaker. For more information on this event, please feel free to contact the Violence Intervention Project at 487-2111
If you know of someone living in an abusive relationship, please encourage them to attend this event. It may be the first step in changing their lives for the better. More importantly, if you yourself are a victim of Domestic Abuse, please consider taking the time to attend and surround yourself with people who are ready and willing to help you take that first step. This is especially important if you are a parent, as you not only have the ability to change your life for the better, but more importantly change the lives of your children preventing them from being the next generation of either abusers or victims. As parents our primary duty is to our children and teaching them how to establish and maintain healthy loving relationships is the greatest obligation we have.