Domestic violence touches our lives
Dear Editor:As you may be aware, domestic violence is a highly prevalent social problem facing our nation, the state of Colorado and our local community as well. In 2004, 50 people died due to domestic violence in Colorado alone (Project Safeguard, 2005). As domestic violence continues to inflict a heavy toll on women, children and families across our state, services to assist victims of domestic violence are critical to the health and well-being of our communities. Our community needs to know that domestic violence impacts more than just individual victims and families. It can also lead to increased unemployment, school absenteeism, community medical expenses and homelessness. To put it simply, domestic violence touches all of our lives.Our community also needs to know that Colorado is one of the only states that does not provide state funding for domestic violence prevention and intervention. This, coupled with a sluggish economic environment, forces domestic violence service providers to rely heavily on community support in order to keep pace with the significant community demand for domestic violence services. Therefore, Colorado needs your support now more than ever to end domestic violence and provide the services our communities desperately need. Here’s how you can help: Community members are invited to make a donation to the Domestic Abuse Fund on their Colorado state income tax return form. Contributions to the Domestic Abuse Fund support local programs across the state that help victims of domestic violence and their families. Here’s what your support can do: According to the Domestic Abuse Assistance Program (Colorado Department of Human Services, 2005), previous contributions to the Domestic Abuse Fund assisted domestic violence service providers in Colorado to provide the followings services in 2004: shelter 5,677 individuals (3,040 women and 2,639 children) for a total of 93,118 shelter nights, respond to 216,120 domestic violence-related calls, provide domestic violence-related services such as counseling and advocacy to 31,994 nonresidential clients.To learn more about how to support agencies working to end domestic violence in your community, please go to http://www.domesticabusefund.org. Just check off the Domestic Abuse Fund on your state income tax return! Julie OlsonExecutive director, Advocate Safehouse ProjectGlenwood Springs
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