Bronx, NY – On Monday, October 2nd, 2023, at 11:00 a.m., Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson launched Domestic Violence Awareness Month at Borough Hall. Joined by elected officials, advocates, survivors, the DiVA (Domestic Violence Awareness) Coalition, and her Domestic Violence Advisory Council, she declared Domestic Violence a public health crisis in the borough of the Bronx and unveiled her 31 Days of Action Against DV Awareness Campaign.

This initiative will highlight the critical work of Bronx-based organizations and NYC agencies that serve to protect, counsel, educate, and support survivor families, and enforce policy to ensure Bronx residents are equipped with the resources to support their loved ones who might be experiencing domestic violence. NYPD statistics show a nearly 59% increase in domestic violence offenders from 2021 to 2022. Furthermore, domestic, intimate partner and other family homicides are more likely to occur in the Bronx compared to any other borough.

“We are saddened and outraged by the growing rates of domestic violence incidents that we are seeing in our borough. Just as we speak about other forms of violence, we need to also bring visibility to the harm domestic violence is causing in our communities,” said Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson. “Our residents have a fundamental right to feel safe in and out of their homes, which is why we are working with our community-based organizations, Diva Coalition, our Domestic Violence Advisory Council, and anti-violence advocates to launch a 31-Day of Action Campaign to bring awareness to this growing public health crisis. For too long this issue has been allowed to persist with survivors’ voices often being silenced. Whether it involves increased counseling services and intervention programs, more enforcement, public policy, advocacy, or cultural awareness, we are committed to doing more to ensure our children and families are safe and out of harm’s way.”

“We applaud Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson for her 31 Days of Action Against Domestic Violence Awareness Campaign,” said Melissa Cebollero, Associate Vice President, of Community Affairs, Montefiore Einstein. “This campaign strongly aligns with Montefiore Einstein’s commitment to addressing the conditions that people in our community are born into, work, and live in, which are widely recognized to have a significant impact on a person’s health. We are proud to work with the Bronx Borough President’s office to ensure community members have access to the life-saving resources being made available by her office.”

“We are proud to partner with Bronx Borough President Gibson on this important Domestic Violence Awareness Month initiative for survivors. Working with survivors throughout New York City, we are committed to making sure Bronx residents have access to life-saving resources for survivors to feel supported in their path to healing and know that they are not alone,” said Maureen Curtis, VP of Criminal Justice & Court Programs, Safe Horizon.

“This Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we thank the Office of the Bronx Borough President for bringing attention to this vital issue and acknowledging the risk factors and barriers to seeking help faced by older adults experiencing changes in their functional abilities, social environment, and financial situation. Addressing domestic violence against older adults requires tailored and targeted responses and programs that can meet their complex social, legal, and medical needs,” said John Holt, Senior Staff Attorney at the Weinberg Center for Elder Justice.

The theme of this year`s initiative is “breaking the silence” with a month of events, trainings, and social media content centered around bringing visibility to survivors, highlighting startling DV data in the Bronx, and advocacy around combatting this growing epidemic in our borough. In 2022, the Bronx had the second-highest number of total domestic violence victims reported to the NYPD with the 47th Precinct having the highest with 4,095 complaints.

The students, faculty, and staff of Monroe College are proud to stand with the amazing DiVA team, Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, and others throughout our local community who stand up every day against relationship abuse and domestic violence and advocate for survivors,” said Marc Jerome, President of the Bronx-based institution. “As the father of three daughters, this is a matter very close to my heart.”

“We are proud to support Bronx Borough President Gibson’s 31 Days of Action Against DV Awareness Campaign,” said Cecile Noel, Commissioner, NYC Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence. “During Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we encourage New Yorkers to join the New York City advocacy community and city electeds as we lift up the stories and experiences of survivors and provide support and resources. We thank Borough President Gibson for the vital role her office plays in the prevention and intervention of domestic violence through multiple efforts including its domestic violence advisory council where best practices in addressing the needs of survivors are shared, and recommendations for improved systemic responses to domestic and gender-based violence are made. Together, we ensure survivors know they are not alone, and that help is available.”

“Domestic violence flows into many aspects of a survivor’s life and can create significant barriers to economic and housing stability, resulting in a strong correlation between experiencing domestic violence and becoming unhoused,” said Commissioner and Chair of the New York City Commission on Human Rights Annabel Palma. “The city’s Human Rights Law prohibits discrimination based on someone’s status as a survivor of domestic violence in housing and employment in order to avoid this outcome and our agency is committed to education around these protections. The Bronx Borough President’s, ‘31 Days of Action Against Domestic Violence’ exemplifies the dedication and compassion necessary to impede the increasing rate of domestic violence incidents and we applaud this initiative.”

“Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson has spent her career amplifying the voices of survivors of domestic violence. Urban Resource Institute (URI) is honored to partner with her office in this vital work. Spreading awareness about the devastating impact of domestic violence and how it can lead to homelessness for many families, will help us more effectively craft solutions and direct resources to those who need it most,” said Nathaniel Fields, Chief Executive Officer of Urban Resource Institute.

NMIC applauds Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson for amplifying the issue of domestic violence. It is particularly important when New Yorkers are welcoming new immigrants to the city that there are enough culturally and linguistically affirming resources for survivors. NMIC values our collaboration with the Bronx Borough President’s office, and we look forward to continuing to provide legal services, counseling, and healing spaces to immigrant survivors.”

“Her Justice advocates alongside Bronx survivors who are looking to build safer, stronger futures free from abuse. We work in the civil justice system to stand with survivors – through divorce, spousal support, child custody, visitation, orders of protection, and policy advocacy. Thank you to Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson for educating our community about intimate partner violence – so our neighbors know they have options and support.” said Amy Barasch, Esq., Executive Director, Her Justice.

We are proud to stand with the Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson as she brings visibility to the critical issue of domestic violence, a public health crisis that plagues all of our communities in the Bronx. As advocates for survivors, we at Jahajee Sisters are constantly holding our breath, fearful that another Indo-Caribbean sister might lose her life to violence. We’ve lost so many survivors in New York City in the last few years, and we do this work for them. We fully support the Borough President’s 31 days of Action Against Domestic Violence Campaign and know it’s an important step in ensuring that survivors in the Bronx can connect to resources that will enable their healing and wellness,” said Simone Jhingoor and Shivana Jorawar, Co-Executive Directors at Jahajee Sisters.

“In recognition of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month this October, Pillars of Peace remains steadfast in its commitment to raising awareness about domestic violence within all of our communities. October serves as a crucial platform to educate, inform, and empower individuals and communities to stand united against domestic violence. Pillars of Peace is proud to partner with Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson to partake in a series of events, workshops, and campaigns throughout October and beyond, advocating for stronger support systems, increased education, and vital resources to support the vulnerable populations we serve. Join us as we collectively strive for a safer future for all,” said Rachel Cerbone, Executive Director, Pillars of Peace.

Last year, the Borough President relaunched the Bronx`s Domestic Violence Advisory Council which comprises over 80 members representing NYC justice, law enforcement, and anti-violence agencies, elected officials, domestic violence advocates, service providers, and survivor organizations, as well as civic, clergy, and public health leaders. The relaunch was in response to the consistent increase in domestic and gender-based violence in the Bronx with the Advisory Council lending their knowledge and expertise to assist with bringing visibility and support to survivors as well as finding solutions to combat the high rates of domestic violence in the borough.

Click here for a list of events planned for Domestic Violence Awareness Month by the Office of the Bronx Borough President and our CBO partners.