October is Domestic Violence Intervention Month

Carin Gomes and Karen Moessner of Domestic Violence Intervention Fallon stand with shirts displayed on “The Clothesline Project” at Millennium Park.

Carin Gomes and Karen Moessner of Domestic Violence Intervention Fallon stand with shirts displayed on “The Clothesline Project” at Millennium Park.
Sara Dowling | NNG

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Domestic Violence Intervention Fallon dyed the Maine Street fountain purple at the beginning of the month, and Mayor Ken Tedford issued a proclamation to signify the start of Domestic Violence Intervention Month.

The proclamation said, in part, “The City of Fallon joins with others across Nevada and the nation in supporting victims of domestic violence, as well as local programs, state coalitions, national organizations, and other agencies nationwide who are committed to increasing public awareness of domestic violence and sending a clear message to abusers that domestic violence is not tolerated in the City of Fallon.”

The public is encouraged to wear or display purple on “Purple Thursday” (Oct. 19) and throughout the month to show support.

According to the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) 2022 data, 44,882 adult and child victims of domestic violence found refuge in emergency shelters and other housing programs provided by local programs in the United States. 34,453 victims received non-residential support.

Seventy percent of unmet requests in Nevada have been for emergency shelter, hotels, motels and other housing.

“Survivors and their children need a safe place to stay as they escape abuse and rebuild their lives,” says nnedv.org. “Programs need increased funding to provide shelter, housing, trainings, and other services to all survivors seeking help, while also working toward preventing violence in their communities.”

Grant money, a common source of nonprofit funding, comes with a lot of regulations about the ways the money can be used. Karen Moessner, executive director of DVI Fallon, explained organizations also have to match the grant amount for their project to be eligible at all.

When T.J. Maxx celebrated the grand opening of its Fallon store in September, the company chose DVI Fallon to receive a $10,000 donation. Moessner called it a “miracle” and said the team was grateful and the donation boosted their morale.

Moessner and Carin Gomes, a certified domestic violence and sexual assault advocate, have also hung items on “The Clothesline Project” display at Millennium Park. The personal messages of hope on the clothing are made by survivors of domestic violence and those who know someone it has affected.

A sign near the clothesline explains how the clothing colors represent the different types of emotional and physical abuse. For example, a survivor of a physical assault would decorate a yellow shirt. A white shirt memorializes someone who died as a result of violence. This year’s display includes a Onesie which honors the giant impact domestic violence has had on a small baby’s life.

Gomes said the “Hands Are Not For Hitting” bus will park at several schools during the last week of October. Students will be invited to place a painted handprint on the bus after taking the pledge not to use their hands for hitting. The bus will also be at the Maine Street Spooktacular on Oct. 31.

The local 24-hour crisis hotline (775-427-1500) will always be answered by a person and it doesn’t have a voicemail box. Moessner said someone reaching out may only be safe to make a call in that moment. For that reason, DVI Fallon also will not return a call without permission.

The Fallon domestic violence support group meets on Thursdays at 6 p.m. with free child care available. Call 775-423-1313 for information.


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