Impact of Domestic Violence on Children and Families is Focus of New Public Awareness Campaign

Community Outreach Program Offers Children & Families Resources to Get Help

Sep 27, 2011, 13:00 ET from INOBTR

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A new public awareness campaign debuts today in the Los Angeles area that targets children and families affected by Domestic Violence.  This campaign is a partnership between INOBTR and Children's Institute, Inc. (CII), which supports CII's Project ERIN (Emergency Response Intervention Network) program.  This campaign and program have both been funded through a cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).  Project ERIN is a free service for domestic violence survivors and their children – this program covers the Wilshire, Rampart, Hollywood, and Olympic divisions of the Los Angeles Police Department.

This Domestic Violence campaign has been directed by INOBTR ("I Know Better"), a non-profit organization that educates about safety through public awareness in a proactive effort to keep kids safe.  INOBTR has worked closely with The Axis Agency/Weber Shandwick in LA on the creative development of this campaign.  The public awareness campaign (PSA) officially launches today in Los Angeles and will run through October, which is also Domestic Violence Awareness month.  

"INOBTR is thrilled to lead this Domestic Violence campaign," said INOBTR Founder Steve Schankman. "Our goal was to deliver a simple and impactful campaign that demonstrated how Domestic Violence impacts children and youth.  I believe we have achieved that goal.  With this campaign, the message is clear that children and youth who witness domestic violence can be impacted for life unless the cycle of violence is broken."

This multilingual campaign is featured in English and Spanish. Mass transportation and broadcast media play an integral campaign role to raise awareness amongst families in general, but specifically those who may be facing trouble.  Key PSA/ad elements include:

  • Bus shelters
  • Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) bus queens
  • Radio spots
  • Community materials and resources (handout, posters, etc)

"The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is pleased to support such an important initiative that illustrates the impact of Domestic Violence on Los Angeles' children and youth," said Jeff Slowikowski, Acting Administrator, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. Department of Justice. "Our office strives every day to protect children and families through our programming and resources.  The Project ERIN program and Domestic Violence campaign are great examples of coordinated prevention and intervention services for children and their families."

Children's Institute, Inc. is a private, nonprofit organization that has served the Los Angeles community for more than 105 years.  CII has created one of the nation's strongest models for working with children affected by violence—including child abuse and neglect, sexual abuse, domestic violence, and violence in their neighborhoods and schools. A key CII initiative, Project ERIN is a community resource program that provides on-the-spot crisis intervention services for victims of domestic violence and also offers ongoing case management, where staff is available to help victims identify and access the services needed to break the cycle of violence. The program also offers free weekly domestic violence survivor support and treatment groups for adults and children.  These services may include the following:

  • Finding a safe place for victims and their children
  • Locating resources that provide food and, if needed, shelter
  • Providing linkage to legal assistance services, such as helping victims obtain a restraining order, accompanying to court when needed, and helping understand the court system
  • Connecting with special programs for victims of domestic violence.

According to the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the Department received close to 50,000 domestic violence calls and reported over 21,000 domestic violence crimes committed in 2009.  This is an increase from 2008, which had 47,400 DV calls for service and 22,000 DV-related crimes city-wide.  Although domestic violence is a problem that affects the entire population, in 2009 Hispanics constituted the largest number of DV victims with 51.4% of the total, followed by African Americans at 27.7% and Caucasians at 15.5%.  Hispanics constituted the largest number of DV arrestees with 53.2% of the total, followed by African Americans at 26.8% and Caucasians at 14.6%.

"The prevalence of domestic violence is made clear by the statistics we share today—more than 500 calls for help each day in L.A. County," said Mary M. Emmons, President and CEO of Children's Institute, Inc.  "The impact of family violence on children is equally disturbing and poses a serious threat to their psychological, emotional and physical well-being.  Given CII's long history to help traumatized children, we appreciate the Department of Justice's support to raise awareness of this critical issue."  

Project ERIN delivers immediate assistance to victims of Domestic Violence.  When the police respond to a domestic violence call, Project ERIN staff is alerted and provides on-the-spot crisis intervention services for victims.  Bilingual ERIN staff is well trained to work with a diverse range of cultures and understanding of immigration issues.  Domestic violence victims can also access immediate help by calling the 24-hour toll-free National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE (7233) or by visiting thehotline.org.

Campaign

The Los Angeles campaign is one of six public awareness initiatives addressing child and youth safety issues.  This project  and is a part of the Project Youth Safety initiative – a comprehensive multimedia, multicultural overarching youth safety awareness initiative.  INOBTR is currently working on upcoming Project Youth Safety campaigns to create issue awareness with today's children and youth including topics such as child abuse, domestic violence, cell phone safety as well as teen dating violence.  The Domestic Violence campaign is the second to launch of the six campaigns.  Additional information on this project is available at www.projectyouthsafety.org.

To learn more about CII and Project ERIN, contact Adriana Molina at (213) 385-5100 Ext. 8209 or via email at amolina@childrensinstitute.org.  

SOURCE INOBTR