McKenna, cops, community to rally against abuse
OLYMPIA – Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna, a longtime supporter of efforts to end domestic violence, will shine a purple light on this preventable crime during Domestic Violence Awareness Month. During the month of October, the Attorney General’s Office will join others statewide in displaying purple lights to remember victims who lost their lives, support survivors and symbolize hope for those still living with abuse.
“The most important thing each of us can do to end abuse is keep the problem in the spotlight by working to build a culture that stands against violence,” said McKenna, who will kickoff Domestic Violence Awareness Month at a law enforcement rally in Kent.
The Purple Light Nights campaign was started by the Covington Domestic Violence Task Force in 2007. The campaign, which has spread to at least 20 states and Canada, encourages residents and businesses to display a 60-watt or stronger black-light bulb or purple string lights on their porches, in store windows or in other prominent locations.
McKenna will discuss how the Attorney General’s Office is working to battle domestic abuse at 12:15 p.m. today at the Maleng Regional Justice Center, 401 Fourth Ave. N. He’ll be joined by Kent Police Chief Steve Strachan, representatives of the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Domestic Violence Unit and officers from law enforcement agencies throughout South King County. They will wear purple ribbons. The event is sponsored by the Auburn Domestic Violence Task Force.
On Friday, Oct. 8, McKenna and his wife, Marilyn, will speak at the Eastside Domestic Violence Program’s Safe Passage breakfast at 7:30 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue, 900 Bellevue Way N.E. Attorney General McKenna cofounded the event in 1998.
EFFORTS TO FIGHT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE:
The Attorney General's Office has a strong history in addressing the problem of domestic violence, including development of comprehensive training materials to help law enforcement handle domestic violence among its ranks.
As attorney general, McKenna convened an advisory group of domestic violence prevention professionals to help suggest ways to combat the epidemic. The Attorney General’s Office proposed legislation passed in 2007, 2008 and 2010 that:
- Created tougher sentences for repeat domestic abusers and those who choke their victims.
- Protects survivors by allowing them to participate in employee shared leave programs.
McKenna's commitment to domestic violence prevention reaches back to his time on the King County Council, where he led the council in supporting a pledge created by the Seattle-based Men’s Network Against Domestic Violence, urging men to end the cycle of domestic violence. The goal of the Men’s Network Against Domestic Violence is to encourage those who are not abusers to speak out about the role men have in creating attitudes that can lead to violence against women. The pledge can be downloaded from http://www.menagainstdv.org/pledge/.
If you or someone you know is being abused, call the Washington State Domestic Violence Hotline 1-800-562-6025 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or at TTY 1-800-787-3224.
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