As this winter approaches, fewer footprints tread the trails, the changing leaves will disappear as hibernation sets in until the next 70-degree weather for purple to re-emerge not because of fear, but avoiding the brutal cold weather trapped between the high rise buildings corridors. Despite strides for equality, more needs to be done, especially where it is difficult to wear an extra layer of heavy clothing even to disguise one’s identity or the scars from an abuse where 70 degrees can be scorned as cold day.
Along these beautiful Caribbean shores, more purple colour and trail walks are needed to help victims escape their trapped abusive relationships, spread awareness, and generate more resources to support change in the ongoing waves of domestic violence and the history of homophobia.
Where you have sexual assault, exploitation, child trafficking, and targeting of people for who they are, it accompanies domestic violence, which at times leads to death. Violence creates a pattern of psychological, economic impact, especially when children are involved. Overcoming this traumatic experience has long-term critical consequences.
First responders are key to the survival of these victims: Not acting due to the lack of a physical scar is problematic. Access to emergency services should have a plan when the call ends and the authorities leave.
The lack of intervention only creates more victims. Aunt Suzie up the road can provide a temporary shelter, but she too hates gays and lesbians from her parents’ views. She now lives in an abusive relationship and never discusses it because of fear, shame, and more abuse, and how it looks on the family.
Men are victims of nearly three million physical assaults in the USA. One in four women will experience domestic violence during her lifetime.
More than three million children witness domestic violence in their homes every year.
Looking in: When few selected media politicize domestic violence and homophobia, including conferences on violence open to a selected few, what people hear often mistakes loud, mindless, opinions with leadership. These issues cannot be used for political gains when several reports have shown that the region still lacks policies to protect victims in general.
See you at the next walk or run, or even standing under a banner for safety for those still only searching for survival, and the soul of their community.