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Working to stop abuse

Nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

That’s more than 10 million people a year, a statistic that is staggering.

To shine a light on those statistics across the country and right here in our own community, the Lawrence County Domestic Violence Task Force recognized October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month with its annual balloon launch and program.

This was the seventh year for the event. Its main goal is to raise awareness that there is help for victims, men and women, for all types of domestic abuse — whether it is physical or emotional.

On a typical day, there are more than 20,000 phone calls placed to domestic violence hotlines nationwide, according to the NCADV. Some of those calls are placed right here in Lawrence County and thanks to the local task force, victims have advocates in the court system, a safe shelter and resources to help them become independent of their abuser.

Domestic violence is kept in the shadows and victims often do not want to come forward. With the help this organization provides and events like the balloon launch, hopefully more people will find the strength to come forward and take back their lives from abuse. And hopefully people will realize domestic violence is an issue that impacts the entire community.