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October 26, 2010 > A day of remembrance

A day of remembrance

By Supervisor Dave Cortese

I would like to invite you to Santa Clara's County's first Day of Remembrance event, scheduled conveniently around lunchtime from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Friday, October 29, 2010 at the County Governmental Center. Refreshments will be served.

Organized by my office and the Santa Clara County Office of Women's Policy, this event will remember the victims of domestic violence and make real plans to stem the tide of these violent acts. Since 1994, at least 211 people have died in incidents related to domestic violence in our county. Each person was a valuable member of our community. They may have been your neighbor, co-worker, fellow faith worshiper or friend. They left behind parents, siblings and children who must now cope with the loss and find the strength to heal and move on with their lives.

This event is part of a regional Day of Remembrance in the Bay Area and similar events are being held in other counties on the same day. Our goal is to raise awareness about domestic violence on a large scale. In planning an event for Santa Clara County, I wanted to be sure that, in addition to a memorial tribute, we take the opportunity to provide information on domestic violence and services available to both victims and perpetrators. We all come into contact with people in a domestic violence situation regularly, although we may not be aware of their suffering and difficulties. I believe it is very important that all of our civic, faith and neighborhood leaders attend this event.

The face of domestic violence is without race, ethnicity or age. It doesn't belong to a particular religion or income level. The victim or perpetrator could be anyone. Recognizing signs of domestic violence is the first step in stopping it or working to make the situation better. According to the Department of Public Health, there are some warning signs that could indicate someone is a victim of domestic violence.

Do you know someone who claims to be prone to "accidents" or being repeatedly injured; has injuries that could not be caused unintentionally or that do not match the story of what caused them; has bruises, burns or wounds that are shaped like teeth, hands, belts, cigarette tips or that look like the injured person has a glove or sock on (from having a hand or foot placed in boiling water); has wounds in various states of healing; is often seeking medical help or, conversely, waiting to seek or not seeking medical help even for serious injuries; shows signs of depression; is contemplating suicide?

Many people suffer abuse without signs of physical injury. Friends might notice a personality change, a partner controlling the victim's behavior or victims no longer attending outside events. If you are, or someone you know is in this situation, I would urge you to contact someone from a local domestic violence assistance organization such as Next Door Solutions (408) 279-2962, Turning Point (408) 739-2171, Maitri 1-888-8MAITRI (1-888-862-4874) and AACI Asian Women's Home (408) 975-2739.

Remember, you are not alone. In Santa Clara County in 2009, there were 4,721 police calls related to domestic violence and 699 women and children received emergency shelter. Counselors with these organizations can help you figure out the "next steps" to get you, or someone you know, into a better situation. Many of these organizations will have information available at the Day of Remembrance event on October 29.

If you have questions about our Day of Remembrance for domestic violence on October 29, please contact me at (408) 299-5030 or I look forward to seeing you and working together on this important issue.

Domestic Violence Day of Remembrance
Friday, October 29
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Isaac Newton Center Auditorium
70 W. Hedding St., San Jose
(408) 299-5030

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