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Rockford leaders use chalk messages to show support for victims of domestic violence | Best Stories

Rockford leaders use chalk messages to show support for victims of domestic violence

ROCKFORD (WREX) – Leaders from Rockford and Winnebago County joined the YWCA on Monday to unveil chalk messages to show their support for domestic violence survivors.

The YWCA of Northwest Illinois has launched A Week Without Violence, a YWCA global movement to end violence against women and girls.

Community leaders like Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana, State Attorney J Hanley and President Joe Chiarelli wrote messages of hope for women and children facing violence on Monday outside the Winnebago County Justice Center .

“This Violence Free Week is a great starting point for raising awareness, but I would like to call on all residents to take a step above it. Strive for more than a week without violence in our community,” Chiarelli said during the chalk unveiling.

The posts also showed statistics, including that one in four girls will be sexually assaulted as adults, and resources in the county where women and children can get help.

“Whether they contact the police or not, then go contact the Family Peace Center, contact Remedies, get help,” Sheriff Caruana said. “Reach out to the YWCA if you don’t want law enforcement involved, if you are intimidated by law enforcement. We will help you, but I totally understand.”

Sheriff Caruana said more than 10% of county service calls were for domestic violence or domestic violence in 2021. 41% of violent crimes are domestic in Rockford, according to the police department.

The start of the week comes a day after Rockford marked his 20th murder in the city so far in 2021. Last year the city recorded 36 murders, a record.

The YWCA will hold events every day for A Week Without Violence. Everyone is invited to participate.


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