Domestic violence calls for help on the rise in Orange County

This October, News 12 is continuing to shine a spotlight on this national problem for Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Blaise Gomez

Oct 4, 2022, 8:49 PM

Updated 596 days ago

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More than 20 people are abused each minute by an intimate partner in the U.S., according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
This October, News 12 is continuing to shine a spotlight on this national problem for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. 
In the Hudson Valley, advocates with the Orange County domestic violence group Fearless! say calls for help countywide have gone up by 39% since 2019. 
“Four calls a day minimally for help across our county alone and that to me is a problem,” said director Kellyann Kostyal-Larrier.  
She says the agency had more than 11,000 calls for help last year and that 29 women have been murdered by an intimate partner in Orange County since 2004. 
“We have a pandemic across the globe in addressing intimate partner violence,” said Kostyal-Larrier. 
Tragic cases like Petra Mohammed and Yessica Lopez have made local headlines. 
Others killed are being remembered daily this month in Fearless’ Remember Their Name online campaign. 
“They have not been forgotten. They had a face. They were someone to many people,” said Kostyal-Larrier. 
The agency also hosts their annual clothesline project, which is on display this year in Goshen with T-shirts made by survivors. 
It symbolizes a time when women often only felt safe to talk to each other about intimate partner violence while hanging clothes to dry. 
Advocates say society has come a long way since then in addressing domestic violence but that we still have a long way to go. 
“It thrives in silence. If we don’t start saying something and doing something and not accepting it collectively as a society then we are not going to make a true impact,” said Kostyal-Larrier. 
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men will experience some form of domestic violence in their lifetime.
If you or someone you know needs help with intimate partner abuse, help is available through Fearless! at 845-562-5340.
Yessica Lopez - killed by domestic violence
Petra Mohammed - killed by domestic violence 


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