Starting this week, members of the Wells College community can participate in on-campus activities with an awareness campaign and a public forum this October in honor of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Students, faculty, and staff can sign a pledge, take a purple ribbon, or wear purple throughout the month to show support for survivors of domestic violence. Title IX Coordinator and Campus Compliance Officer Geoffrey Gabriel said the number of domestic and dating, interpersonal, and power-based violence cases has steadily increased nationwide over the past decade, especially during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Wells College community continues to provide meaningful awareness and prevention of all forms of violence.
Last year was the first time launching the campaign, and Gabriel said more than 130 Wells community members signed a pledge on a purple hand cut-out, which was then placed on a 40-foot banner and displayed in the dining hall for two weeks.
“It was a compelling and impactful visualization, seeing all of those purple hands and knowing that we stand in solidarity with all survivors and are committed to doing all we can, individually and collectively, to condemn and eradicate all forms of violence,” Gabriel said. “No Wellsian can do it all, but all Wellsians must do something.”
A new addition to this year’s campaign is a public forum with a panel of specialists that will take place Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the Sommer Center of Smith Hall. The panel will include the college’s Sexual Assault Vicitims Advocate Resource representative and other staff from Cayuga Counseling Services. On- and off-campus resources will be discussed, and a Q&A session on healthy and unhealthy relationships will follow. Light refreshments will be served, and attendees can enter to win a raffle for prizes at the end of the event. More information on Wells’ These Hands Don’t Hurt can be found at a table in the dining hall of Main Building until Friday.
Visit the contact information page for on-campus reporting regarding cases of sexual assault, including domestic violence, for more resources at Wells. If you or someone you know may be a victim of domestic violence, contact the 24/7 helpline by calling, texting, or live-chatting with a domestic violence and sexual assault advocate through the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence's website.