For Immediate Release: October 20, 2011
Contacts: Bryant G. Gaspard (Huntley) | firstname.lastname@example.org | (518) 455-3531
Guillermo Martinez (Rivera) | email@example.com | (518) 455-5844
Lawmakers: High Rates of Domestic Violence Hurts Adolescents, More Needs to be Done to Protect Women
Senator Shirley L. Huntley & Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera call for passage of legislation that will reverse increasing rates of violence against women
ALBANY, NEW YORK (10/20/2011) -- New York City saw an increase in domestic violence cases by 12.3% in 2010, according to the state Division of Criminal Justice Services statistics. These statistics also include “intimate partner” violence which includes teenagers, as well as gay and heterosexual couples who are just dating.
The US Department of Justice has found women are 10 times more likely to be killed by intimate partner violence and almost 10% of intentional injuries to adolescent girls are reported to be the result of violent male dating. The psychological impact on women of such violence is a leading contributor to substance abuse, risky sexual behavior, pregnancy and suicide.
“These statistics are very disturbing and violence among intimate and domestic couples cripples the lives of the victims and families involved,” said Senator Shirley L. Huntley (D-Jamaica), Ranking Member Senate Standing Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities. “Through legislation that I have sponsored with Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera (D-Bronx), (S.3079A/A.7348A) we seek to understand and face the daunting consequences when intimate partner violence occurs.” This legislation will create at temporary state commission headed by the Office of Mental Health on intimate partner violence which will provide lawmakers with recommendations on how New York can reduce and prevent such behavior.
According to Assemblywoman Rivera (D-Bronx), member of the Assembly Standing Committee on Children and Families, “Ending intimate partner violence against women should be a priority for our society. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), 1.5 million women are physically or sexually abused by an intimate partner each year. Moreover, 25% of adolescents have experienced physical or sexual dating violence.”
“The amount of dating violence that is occurring among our youth is unconscionable, and often leads to negative disturbances in the lives of adolescents that will affect their future”, said Senator Huntley. “Young women are especially in harm’s way, and steps must be taken that provide resource and counseling for women and couples in general who may be in a violent relationship.”
Rivera stated, ‘Earlier this year we were told that record numbers of young Hispanic females were attempting suicide in New York State, with Brooklyn seeing 1 in five girls seeking to end their lives. Intimate partner violence is beginning at younger and younger ages with girls as young as nine years of age being physically and emotionally abused. New York must do more to stop this behavior and catastrophic implications.”
Warning signs of someone in an abusive relationship may include injuries, absence from work or school, low self-esteem and personality changes. “Help is out there, It is so important that both those who are victims as well as those who are concerned for someone they know who maybe abused, to be aware and educated about where they can turn to for assistance,” said, Senator Huntley.
To learn more about domestic violence and how to prevent abuse, Senator Huntley and Assemblywoman Rivera encourage people to visit:
• The New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence at www.opdv.state.ny.us
or (800) 942-6906
• Safe Horizon – www.safehorizon.org or (212) 577-7700
• The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence – www.ncadv.org or (303) 839-1852