Statistics can carry a lot of weight. Like the fact that nationally, one in every four women will be the victim of domestic violence. And the fact that such violence takes lives, destroys families and costs the nation billion in health care costs and lost wages. In Oregon, annually, 18 people die each year from domestic violence, including men, women and children.
When the Gateway Center for Domestic Violence opened its doors in September 2010, it was intended as a one-stop hub for both victims of domestic violence and their families. A collaboration between the city of Portland, Multnomah County, and public and private agencies, the center has quickly become a crucial refuge for families across the county seeking escape and guidance. From helping victims file for restraining orders to leading teen therapy sessions, Gateway has left a resounding impact on its clientele.
Even what all we know today about domestic violence, it remains one of the most under reported crimes in the nation. But for as many victims who walk into Gateway, survivors walk out. To commemorate October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Street Roots spoke with three survivors about their journey to move beyond the violence they experienced. Continue reading