ALTON – Domestic violence continues to be a lethal issue nationwide. Every minute, 20 people in the U.S. are abused by their partner, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
In honor of the victims and in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Third Judicial Circuit Family Violence Prevention Council and Alton Memorial Hospital are presenting a memorial service for the community, according to the court's press release.
Since 1996, there have been more than 92 homicides in Madison County that were related to domestic abuse, the release states. The memorial service will remember some of these victims, including five Madison County residents who succumbed to domestic violence-related circumstances this past year.
The service will take place at the Chapel at Alton Memorial Hospital on Oct. 18 from 5:30-7 p.m. Speakers will include Tanya Fox, a domestic abuse survivor; State Sen. Bill Haine; and Circuit Judge Sarah Smith of Domestic Violence Accountability Court. Additionally, Alton Police Chief Jake Simmons will speak.
Senator William R. Haine (D-IL) www.ilga.gov
“This annual event is important to all of us because we must never forget those who have died as a result of abuse," Circuit Judge Barbara Crowder, the co-chair of the Third Judicial Circuit Family Violence Prevention Council, said in the release. "We also need to let the community know the resources that are available because, with help, lives can be saved.”
Attendees will get the chance to view the Madison County Clothesline Exhibit from the Oasis Women’s Center, which consists of creations from women and children who were survivors of domestic abuse. Additionally, there will be representatives and resources from rescue and aid organizations such as Madison County Child Advocacy Center, Alton YWCA, Call for Help Sexual Assault Victims’ Unit, Refuge, the Zonta Club of Alton/Wood River and Oasis Women’s Center.
The entire community is welcome to attend the memorial service this Wednesday. There will be a light buffet included toward the end of the event.