Community gathers to march for domestic violence awareness

Published: Sep. 25, 2018 at 10:00 PM CDT
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Domestic abuse cases are on the rise, but that's thanks to more awareness.

Marches, like the Domestic Violence Awareness March and Rally held on Omaha on Tuesday, bring more attention to the issue.

Deb Rockwood knows about the topic all too well.

"You're scared because obviously you're going to be alone and have to survive on your own," Rockwood said.

She was in three abusive relationships. Her health prevented her from walking in Tuesday's march, but she stood in solidarity with several others.

"I stood up because it was just getting worse, and things weren't going well. I left two years ago, and I've been divorced now for a year," Rockwood said.

The Women's Center for Advancement said the number of cases of domestic abuse is on the rise because more people are reporting the abuse.

"When we see a community start to actually believe survivors and stand up, and stand up with survivors, we see more people willing to come and seek help," said Elizabeth Power, who works at the center.

In light of Bill Cosby's sentencing and the #MeToo movement, both women agreed on the message being heard.

"They start to trust the system a little bit more," Power said.

Rockwood said there are still steps to be taken.

"The more billboards, the more voices, the social media, the awareness. Just awareness. With awareness, we've come so far. Look how far we've come," she said.

More than two dozen people showed up for the Tuesday march, including the mother of missing Omaha woman, Camisha Hollis.

She said the rest of the family are holding up well, and they're still hoping to bring Hollis back home soon.

If you or someone you know is in need of help, the Women's Center for Advancement has a 24-hour hot line that can be reached at 402-345-7273.

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