URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) – Families across Central Illinois are being torn apart by domestic violence, and the people trying to stop have said it’s only gotten worse during the pandemic.
Thursday, there’s a summit in Champaign County to try and turn that trend around.
They are hoping to reach first responders, teachers, local service providers, anyone who might have hands-on interactions with someone struggling.
The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence said 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced some form of domestic violence.
They said 41.5% of women and 25.9% of men in Illinois have experienced domestic violence.
Courage Connection is hosting the event. It’s called “The Courage to be part of the change summit: Reducing Domestic Violence in CU”.
Leaders with Courage Connection said domestic violence impacts not just one person or a certain group of people, but the entire community.
“We have an overwhelming number of people that have been effected by domestic violence, especially throughout COVID. Just the different obstacles and barriers that we’ve seen these past few years. So it’s very important that all of us kind of band and work together,” Osajuli Cravens, Director of Engagement and Development, said.
The event will feature 3 nationally recognized speakers on women’s empowerment and domestic violence issues, as well as a discussion and brainstorming session that will encourage all participants to identify both personal and community-based actions to improve Champaign County. Featured speakers include:
- Feminista Jones, an author and activist who launched the global anti-street harassment campaign #YouOKSis.
- Tanisha King, an author and consultant who helps organizations move from performative to transformative diversity, equity, and inclusion practices.
- Sarah Mellor, the Social Services Director at The Immigration Project and an expert in domestic violence in the Latinx and immigrant communities.
The summit is open to the public. It’s this Thursday starting at 3 pm at the CityView Events & Meeting Center (45 E. University Ave., Champaign).
If you would like to attend, you can pre-register here. They are following COVID-19 protocol and masks will be mandated.