Logan County Observes Domestic Violence Awareness Month


National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), observed in October, is a time to recognize victims and raise awareness about the devastating impact of domestic violence.

Today, Lutheran Community Services hosted the annual Domestic Violence Awareness Ceremony.

TCN Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Crisis Center Program Director, Debbie Brownlee addressed a room full of supporters thanking them for their continued support.

Brownlee went on to explain that the Organization recently earned an accreditation:

Bellefontaine Mayor Ben Stahler, along with the Logan County Commissioners made this Proclamation:

  • WHEREAS, the impact of domestic violence is wide-ranging, affecting individuals and society as a whole, here in our community, throughout the United States and around the world, and
  • WHEREAS, on average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the USA. During one year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men, and
  • WHEREAS, a home should be a place of stability, comfort, and love and domestic violence shatters this important foundation, and
  • WHEREAS, during National Domestic Violence Awareness Month and throughout the year, we express our gratitude to advocates, counselors, law enforcement, and others who provide care to those affected by these acts of cruelty and for those who work to bring offenders to justice, and
  • WHEREAS, October has been recognized as Domestic Violence Awareness Month since 1987. Similar to decorating soldiers who were wounded in battle, the color purple is meant to be a symbol of peace, courage, survival, honor, and dedication to ending domestic violence, and
  • WHEREAS, the purpose of Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) is to mourn victims, celebrate survivors, and network for change, and
  • Whereas, the City of Bellefontaine and Logan County continue their support of Soteria House, Consolidated Care, Law Enforcement, and other agencies who wage this war every day to combat domestic violence
  • THEREFORE, BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED by the Logan Commissioners that the Mayor of the City of Bellefontaine and the Logan County Commissioners do hereby announce October 2023 as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We join with other communities across Ohio and the Nation to support victims of domestic violence and share the worthy goals of this month-long observance. It is our intention to send a loud and clear message to abusers, both in word and deed, that domestic violence is unacceptable and is not tolerated in our communities

Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another partner. This kind of abuse affects everyone – men, women, and children of all races, religions, and cultures – without prejudice.

To help prevent domestic violence, it is important to recognize the warning signs. Signs often begin subtly and worsen over time. While not all-inclusive, the following list may indicate potential signs of domestic violence.

  • Isolation – Permission is needed before making plans or speaking to friends and family members. Victims may be forced to quit their jobs or drop out of school.
  • Low Self-Esteem – Feeling deserving of the abuser’s violence, accepting fault for, and making excuses for their partner’s behavior.
  • Unexplained Injuries – Bruises, cuts, scrapes, or even broken bones that are blamed on clumsiness or are in multiple stages of healing.
  • Depression or Anxiety – Persistent feelings of hopelessness, fear of angering their partner, and fear of repercussions for seeking help.

If you are concerned that someone you care about is in an abusive relationship, the National Domestic Violence Hotline recommends the following approach:

  • Express your concerns to your loved one in a gentle and non-judgmental way.
  • Encourage participation in activities outside of the relationship with friends and family.
  • Encourage outreach to people who can provide help and guidance, such as the phone number for the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 800-799-SAFE (7233).
  • Continue to show your support regardless of the decisions made by your loved one.

Brownlee talks about how people who want to help survivors/make donations/volunteer:

Ohio Domestic Violence Fatalities facts for 2023: (From July 1, 2022, – June 30, 2023: 112 Fatalities in 82 cases

  • 78 Deceased Victims (including 1 from Logan County and 1 from Champaign County) & 34 Decesased Perpetrators
  • 40% of all deceased were victims of color
  • 22% of deceased victims died from strangulation or traumatic brain injuries
  • 100 people were shot in the 82 cases
  • There were 13 murder-suicides, 6 multiple murder-suicides & 3 attempted murder-suicides

TCN recognized 4 different agencies for their support within the last year:

  • St. Vincent de Paul, Michelle Nichols
  • Ashley Homestore, Cindy Titus
  • Bridges Community Action, Marcie Barhorst
  • West Liberty Cares, Melanie Park

Bellefontaine Mayor Ben Stahler was named Community Hero of the Year for his giving efforts and continued support of the program.

West Liberty Cares was awarded the Liz Parker Community Hero Award for their help to survivors.

For more information and guidance on helping someone who is experiencing domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline toll-free at 800-799-SAFE (7233) OR locally you can contact Soteria House at (937) 404-2365.

Brownlee talks how you can get help if you need it: