BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — October is National Domestic Violence Awareness month, and advocates across the nation are working to break the cycle.
Patricia Bailey is the Executive Director of the Women’s Resource Center in southern West Virginia. It is an organization that provides safety, shelter, counseling and other aid to victims of domestic violence.
“We want to make people aware of what domestic violence is, how lethal and deadly domestic violence is,” Bailey said. “We want them to realize the destruction that happens as a result of domestic violence. But we also want people to know where you can go for help.”
Bailey said West Virginia is ranked 13th in the nation for Domestic Violence homicides. West Virginia saw 31 domestic violence related deaths from October 1, 2018 to September 30, 2019.
Bailey said advocates will light a candle for each of those victims at the awareness vigil on October 17, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. at the Raleigh Playhouse.
“Then people realize what that looks like for 31 people to die,” Bailey said.
‘You’re not alone,’ is the message of this year’s initiative. Bailey said anyone can help raise awareness this month through education.
“Be as educated as you possibly can, and if you know somebody that is a victim, they just need to know that there is help available,” said Bailey.