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DA Flynn flips switch to light Old Erie County Hall purple for Domestic Violence Awareness Month


Tue, Oct 10th 2017 10:15 pm
Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announced Old Erie County Hall is once being illuminated in the color purple to "Shine the Light on Domestic Violence" during the month of October.
In a three-second countdown, Flynn "flipped the switch" at Old Erie County Hall, turning the grand building purple, the symbolic color for domestic violence awareness.
Joining Flynn in taking a stand against domestic violence was Erie County Sheriff Tim Howard; Maj. Edward Kennedy of the New York State Police; Chief Dennis J. Richards of the Buffalo Police Department; Chief Mark F. Pacholec, president of the Erie County Chiefs of Police Association; and Tina E. Pilkey, the DA's director of domestic violence survivor services.
There have been 2,372 domestic violence victims reported by police in Erie County from January to June of this year. In 2016, there were 5,184 domestic violence victims reported in Erie County.
"We are on track to serve as many domestic violence victims this year as last year," Flynn said. "The best way to combat this scourge in our society is awareness. Bathing our beautiful courthouse in purple sends a message to victims that they're not alone, and we are here to help."
Howard said, "I am proud to be part of this ceremony as we, in law enforcement, continue to raise the awareness of domestic violence and work together to arrest, and then prosecute, individuals committing these crimes. My office maintains an active domestic violence unit with deputies, a detective, and civilian advocates to investigate incidents, comfort victims, and help them connect with counselor and victim services. I continue to stand up for victims of domestic violence by maintaining a zero-tolerance policy and mandatory arrest for misdemeanors or higher."
Pacholec said, "The Erie County Chiefs continue to support the efforts of the district attorney's office and all the agencies that assist the victims of domestic violence."
The Erie County district attorney's office's "BE-SAFE" domestic violence advocacy program is among the largest in Western New York serving domestic violence survivors. The program is made up of domestic violence advocates and social workers who can assist victims both in and out of court. Those who need help can call 716-858-4630. The 24-hour domestic violence hotline for Erie County is 716-862-HELP (4357).
Flynn also credits the Erie County Department of Public Works under Commissioner William Geary, Buildings and Grounds Deputy Commissioner Daniel Fitzgibbons, Chief Stationary Engineer Joseph Toth, Director of Engineering for Highways Charles Sickler, Owen Rodgers from the Department of Public Works and stationary engineers Ronald Robidoux and Arthur Hodges, whose efforts helped make the project possible once again this year.
The "Shine the Light on Domestic Violence" campaign, which is taking place in communities all across New York this month, is coordinated by the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence.

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