BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — October is not only Breast Cancer Awareness Month it's also Domestic Violence Awareness Month and officials in Bakersfield are hosting a drive, in support of the month.
Officials say on a typical day in California local domestic violence hotlines receive nearly 20,000 calls. That’s nearly 15 calls every minute. That’s why one local realtor is teaming up with Alliance Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault to make sure this month is also about taking action.
“I think everybody knows one or more people who have been the victim of sexual assault or domestic violence, or both,” said Nona Darling, a local realtor.
It’s an important issue for Darling, to want to help with because it’s more common than you may think. She is teaming up with the Alliance Against Family Violence for a clothing drive in support of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
“There’s all these months that we’re supposed to be aware of different things, Domestic Violence Awareness Month. But just simply being aware of it is one thing but there’s so much everyone can do and kind of getting the words out that there’s ways to help because if everyone knew what they could do, then they would do it,” said Darling.
Alyssa Olivera from the Alliance Against Family Violence said domestic violence can happen to anybody.
“Anybody can be a harm doer, anybody can be a victim of domestic violence and that crosses every barrier we can think of right, race, religion, education level, socioeconomic class. Literally, anybody can be a victim or perpetrator of domestic violence,” said Olivera.
According to the National, Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey as of 2015 about 1 in 4 women and nearly 1 in 10 men have experienced some form of domestic violence by an intimate partner.
What is The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS)?
The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) is an ongoing survey that collects the most current and comprehensive national- and state-level data on intimate partner violence, sexual violence and stalking victimization in the United States. CDC developed NISVS to collect data on these important public health problems and enhance violence prevention efforts.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
In California alone according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence as of 2020, 34.9% of women and 31.1% of men experience different forms of domestic violence.
When it comes to calls about domestic violence in 2020 California received more than 160,000 calls and over 70,000 involved weapons.
Of those, in Kern County, there were over 8,000 calls with nearly 3,000 involving weapons.
Olivera said there are several layers to domestic violence.
“We think of these issues and immediately we think of just physical violence, one partner pushing the other or shoving the other, but there is so much more there,” said Olivera.
On top of physical violence, it can also be intimidation, threats, emotional abuse, and more. With the toll it can take, Olivera also said this is why donation drives are important.
“The drive is amazing, the more things we can raise to help survivors get back on their feet and get things settled and move towards their healing and move towards their self-sufficiency away from this abuse, the better it is for everybody,” said Olivera
If you are experiencing domestic violence there are several resources available to you and you can call (661-327-1091).