October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which first began in 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence as a Day of Unity to connect battered women’s advocates across the country.
State Rep. Bronna Kahle of Adrian addressed victims and supporters at a domestic abuse survivor rally on the Capitol steps today, kicking off the start of Domestic Abuse Awareness Month.
One in four women and one in nine men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner. Domestic violence has long-term negative effects, impacting mental health, physical health, productivity, earning potential, and the overall financial security of its victims.
“Domestic violence is a growing public health crisis and it flourishes when we remain silent,” Rep. Kahle said. “We must stop the silence and use our voices to raise awareness of this tragedy. It’s time to remove the stigma that silences victims far too often.”
The Michigan Domestic Violence Rally was championed by Adrian township resident, Melissa Beal, a domestic abuse survivor and co-organizer of the event. The preliminary plan for the Lansing event was birthed over a cup of coffee and a conversation between Beal and Kahle at a local Adrian restaurant earlier this year. Beal had contacted Kahle for a meeting to discuss domestic violence concerns and the idea for an awareness rally emerged at their meeting.
“Melissa is incredibly strong and shares her story in a compelling and brave way,” Rep. Kahle stated. “Her work to bring awareness to the widespread problem of relational trauma and domestic abuse is just beginning. I am honored to stand with her and so many other survivors at our state Capitol today.”
Individuals from the Catherine Cobb Safe House in Lenawee County also attended the rally in Lansing.
PHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Bronna Kahle of Adrian addresses domestic abuse victims and supporters at a rally on the Michigan State Capitol steps today, kicking off the start of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
PHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Bronna Kahle and Adrian Township resident, Melissa Beal, embrace during the Michigan Domestic Violence Awareness Rally on the Michigan State Capitol steps.