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NYC Go Purple Day: de Blasio Administration Illuminates City in Purple to Raise Awareness About Domestic Violence

NEW YORK, NY—October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and purple is the symbolic color to raise awareness about domestic violence. On NYC Go Purple Day, Administration and elected officials, and volunteers in all five boroughs will conduct outreach and provide information about domestic violence to New Yorkers in public spaces. All New Yorkers, including City employees, are encouraged to wear purple and post photos on social media with the hashtags #NYCGoPurple and #DVAM2018.

“In New York City, no one should suffer in silence,” said First Lady Chirlane McCray, co-chair of the NYC Domestic Violence Task Force. “The Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence supports survivors every step of the way to: safety, justice and healing. Domestic Violence Awareness Month is an opportunity for all New Yorkers to become a resource to their community by learning about domestic and gender-based violence and the services available.”

During Domestic Violence Awareness Month and throughout the year, the City encourages all New Yorkers to:

  • Recognize and speak out against intimate partner violence, gender injustice, and all forms of abuse.
  • Offer unconditional support to someone who has experienced violence.
  • Speak up against statements that promote violence.
  • Get help from an expert, advocate, or other professional.
  • Share key resources with those who need help:
    • Connect with NYC’s DV Hotline for 24/7 support: 1-800-621-4673
    • Call 911 in an emergency
    • For information, or to connect to services, call 1-212-788-3156 and ask for NYC Family Justice Centers.

In observance of NYC Go Purple Day, several landmarks around New York City will be illuminated in purple in the evening. These include City Hall, the Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens and Staten Island Borough Halls, 1 Police Plaza, the Municipal Building at 1 Centre Street, and Bronx County Courthouse, as well as 1 World Trade Center, the Bank of America Tower (at One Bryant Park), 4 Times Square, and the Parachute Jump in Coney Island. As part of the citywide outreach for Domestic Violence Awareness Month this October, Yankee Stadium is running a special message on its Jumbotron, in addition to lighting the stadium purple on NYC Go Purple Day. In addition, for two weeks in October, the Staten Island Ferry is running a special message on its Zippertron at Whitehall Terminal, and LinkNYC kiosks are running digital ads promoting domestic violence resources available to New Yorkers at kiosks citywide.

“New York City stands firmly against all forms of gender-based violence and by joining NYC Go Purple, New Yorkers can send a unified message that we are against violence. As the City expands its work and resources to end domestic and gender based violence, we encourage everyone to play a role, today and every day, in raising awareness and showing solidary with survivors,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services, Dr. Herminia Palacio.

“Awareness is the first defense against domestic violence, and every year, with NYC Go Purple, we keep this important issue in front of New Yorkers,” said Cecile Noel, Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence. “Domestic violence awareness and prevention is not confined to one day of the year. NYC Go Purple reminds us that, every day, every New Yorker can play an important role in ending domestic violence.”

The de Blasio Administration has made an unprecedented effort to reduce domestic violence in New York City. Most recently, the Mayor announced the expansion of Office to Combat Domestic Violence (OCDV) and changed the Office name to the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence (ENDGBV). ENDGBV will continue to develop and coordinate a citywide response to intimate partner and family violence and now has the expanded authority to address gender-based violence, including sexual assault, stalking and trafficking.

In 2017, the City announced the investment of nearly $11 million dollars in initiatives that were recommended by its Domestic Violence Task Force. In 2016, the City opened the Staten Island Family Justice Center, the City’s fifth, and completed the de Blasio administration’s vision of having a Center in every borough. For more information on available services and resources for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence, visit www.nyc.gov/ENDGBV.

“As the agency that provides the largest network of domestic violence services in the country, the NYC Department of Social Services’ Human Resources Administration has a longstanding commitment to offer support and effectively address the needs of domestic violence survivors,” said Department of Social Services Commissioner Steven Banks. “NYC Go Purple Day is a reminder that we all play a role in helping survivors by connecting them to the services our City has in place to help them rebuild their lives.”

“Today, we come together to remind New Yorkers that domestic violence is an issue that negatively impacts survivors in many subtle and unseen ways, often preventing them from accessing housing, maintaining employment, and enjoying public spaces,” said Chair and Commissioner of the NYC Commission on Human Rights, Carmelyn P. Malalis. “By raising awareness around this critical issue, we not only help survivors feel seen and heard, but also arm all New Yorkers with the information and resources they need to prevent and address domestic violence whenever and wherever it occurs.”

“The New York City Department of Probation is a proud partner of NYC Go Purple Day and is committed to working with the NYC Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, our colleagues across city government, and the community in a true sense of unity to end sexual, domestic and interpersonal violence," Probation Commissioner Ana M. Bermudez.

“NYC Go Purple day is an important reminder that we must all remain vigilant to ensure that all New Yorkers are safe in their homes, at their workplaces, and in their communities,” says Jacqueline Ebanks, Executive Director, Commission on Gender Equity.  “It is an important reminder that NYC supports survivors of intimate partner violence and provides high quality and comprehensive services to heal damaged relationships and restore lives that are impacted by domestic violence.”

“In our work to support stronger families and communities through preventive programs at ACS, we believe deeply in raising awareness about domestic violence - which impacts so many of the families we serve. We are honored to partner with the Office to End Domestic and Gender Based Violence in their important work,” said Jacqueline Martin, Administration for Children’s Services Deputy Commissioner, Preventive Services.

Elizabeth Glazer, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice, said: “Today is a moment when we recognize that safety must be hardwired into every part of a person’s life—including at home and within relationships. For those New Yorkers whose well-being is threatened, we hope this day is a chance to let them know that help is available.” 

“Domestic Violence is a silent epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, or religion,” said Department of Youth and Community Development Commissioner Bill Chong. “NYC Go Purple Day is an important demonstration of our City’s commitment to speak out against sexual assault and domestic violence and stand in solidarity with survivors so that they know that they are not alone, the City cares, and there are resources available to them.”

"Domestic violence threatens the mental health and safety of seniors," said Department for the Aging (DFTA) Commissioner Donna Corrado. "Through DFTA's Providing Options to Elderly Clients Together counseling program and our work with the Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, we're improving outcomes and changing lives."

“NYC Go Purple Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about Domestic Violence-an issue that affects thousands of individuals and families in New York City,” said Acting Commissioner of the Department of Health and Mental Health Dr. Oxiris Barbot. “Domestic Violence can affect an individual’s physical and mental health and make it harder for people to take adequate care of themselves. Today we as a city stand together to show our support to all of the survivors.”

“It is imperative that survivors across our City and schools know that we stand with them, we support them, and they are not alone,” said Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “I applaud the Mayor and First Lady for their efforts to raise awareness and combat domestic and gender-based violence, and for their partnership and support as our school system works to educate our students on healthy and safe relationships.”

“On NYC Go Purple Day we are calling attention to the fact that domestic violence continues to be a profound and pervasive social and public health crisis, crossing lines of class, race, ethnicity, and sexuality. Indeed, in 2017, the NYPD responded to almost 300 intimate partner-related domestic incident reports per day. Across New York City on Go Purple Day, we will be telling domestic violence survivors that they are not alone, and where they can go for assistance and support. I am honored to be working with the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence (ENDGBV), my fellow Council Members, survivors, City agencies, public officials, and community advocates to raise awareness about domestic violence and get help to those who need it most,” said Council Member Helen Rosenthal, Chair of the Committee on Women and Co-Sponsor of NYC Go Purple Day.

"Today and every day, we stand united to embrace the survivors and families of domestic violence and stand with advocates in support of victims in New York City and around the nation,” said Congressman Adriano Espaillat. “Freedom from abuse is a human right, and it remains critical that we continue to lend our collective voices to stop the abuse that impacts our communities and families. Our work must continue to ensure that women and men should never have to fear their abuser alone and that they have the support and resources available for themselves and their families to access safety from their abusive relationships."

“Too many survivors of domestic and gender-based violence are either too afraid to come forward or don’t know where to turn for help. On NYC Go Purple Day, we say ‘we are here for you.’  The only people who should be ashamed of domestic violence are the perpetrators. I hope through efforts like today’s we’ll be able to reach out to those living in fear and in the shadows so that they can get the tools they need to hold their abusers accountable and live safer lives,” said Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney.

"Gender-based violence is unacceptable and we need to address it through social programs, as well as having the tough conversations in our families and communities. It's especially important in this moment to name that domestic violence doesn't just impact women and children but also trans and gender nonconforming folks, and men as well. The cycle of abuse needs to be broken. I will work with Mayor de Blasio, and my colleagues in local and state government to think critically and implement programs that help us help our friends, family and neighbors working to stop this cycle forever,” said Senator Roxanne Persaud, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus.

“One in four women will be a victim of domestic violence in her lifetime. A heartbreaking reality in New York City is that in 2017, there were over 34,000 reports of domestic violence, nearly 10,000 of which are violations of a protective order. I thank Mayor Bill de Blasio and First Lady Chirlane McCray for the work they do to raise awareness and help protect New Yorkers. We must work together to help those in need, provide education on healthy relationships and strengthen protections for survivors of domestic violence who are seeking to reclaim their lives,” said Assembly Member Rebecca A. Seawright, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues.

It’s a sad reality, for far too many women and men who are victims of domestic and gender-based violence. Many victims are often afraid to leave their abusive partner because of fear, shame and lack of resources. NYC Go Purple Day stands on the forefront of domestic violence as it aims to bring awareness to this imperative issue. With awareness come choices, choices to take action and resist poor behavior,” said Assemblywoman Maritza Davila, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues.

“NYC Go Purple Day serves as a reminder that thousands of New Yorkers, most often women and children, are affected by domestic violence. During Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and every month, we must support survivors of intimate partner and gender-based violence, spread awareness of this issue, and educate our communities about the valuable resources that are available to them. I thank the Administration for their efforts to address this critical issue,” said Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues.

“The scourge of domestic violence continues to plague the lives of too many New Yorkers and we need to do everything in our power as elected officials to prevent abuse, protect survivors and keep children from harm, said Assemblymember Aravella Simotas, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues. “Building awareness of the deep impact abuse has on victims, families and communities is a necessary first step.  I applaud City Hall for its efforts to fight this horrendous crime.”

“NYC Go Purple Day not only raises awareness of Domestic Violence, but it is also a demonstration of solidarity and support for victims of abuse. Many victims often feel silenced and alone, fearing they will go unheard and exacerbate their situation. However, by speaking out they can get the support they need to confront an abusive relationship. So today, we wear purple to give someone the courage to ask for help and be heard” said Assemblywoman Alicia Hyndman, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues.

“The times we are encountering currently require our society to be ever vigilant and help once and for all stomp out Domestic Violence,” said Assembly Member Jaime Williams, member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and Task Force on Women’s Issues. “The Mayor’s initiative is to be lauded and I know that I along with my constituency will stand behind these ideals.”

“I am proud to wear purple today to raise awareness about domestic violence, stand with survivors, and continue to pursue legislative solutions to offer increased services for those in domestic violence situations,” said Assemblymember Andrew Hevesi.

“Raising awareness is the first line of defense against the continued scourge of domestic violence,” said Senator Brad Hoylman. “On this Wear Purple Day, I'm grateful to the Mayor's Office and First Lady Chirlane McCray for doing their part to prevent the unending cycle of physical and emotional violence that traps victims and their families in dangerous situations.”

“Domestic violence is a horrific abuse that knows no boundaries and never discriminates,” said Public Advocate Letitia James. “With NYC Go Purple Day, we are reminding New Yorkers that they are not alone and that our city has programs to support them and ensure they have the protections they need. Love should never hurt and survivors need to know that we will do everything in our power to help them.”

“Domestic violence is a scourge on our society,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “At every level, we must work to raise awareness, stamp out violence, and support survivors. Domestic Violence Awareness Month is important to deliberately mark and recognize with events like Go Purple Day specifically because the tragedy of domestic violence too often remains secret, unspoken, and behind closed doors.”

Staten Island Borough President James Oddo said, “On this Go Purple Day, I believe it is important for all of us to acknowledge and speak out on the issue of domestic violence. Help is available for those who need it, and I encourage all Staten Islanders to offer their support to those who have experienced domestic violence.”

“We are here today to tell the victims of domestic violence and abuse that they are not alone or ignored, and that there is help available for themselves and their families,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin, Co-Chair of the Women’s Caucus. “Unfortunately, too many women and men suffer the humiliation and pain of abuse in their homes. Through events like NYC Go Purple Day, we can change attitudes towards domestic violence and give victims hope for a brighter future, free from violence and abuse.”

“While we have made great strides to put a spotlight on this public safety crisis and have expanded resources available to women, including our Family Justice Center in St. George, rates of domestic violence in Staten Island remain unconscionably high. This morning, I was pleased to join government and nonprofit agencies in disseminating life-saving information to Staten Island Ferry commuters. My hope is that we not only spread the word about resources available to victims of domestic and gender-based violence but also continue to put a spotlight on an issue that is too often not discussed,” said Council Member Deborah Rose, Chair of the Committee on Youth Services and member of the Women’s Caucus.

“Domestic violence is not only a woman’s issue; it is an issue that should and must concern everyone,” said Council Member Adrienne Adams, member of the Women’s Caucus. “As New Yorkers, we each have a part in naming domestic violence, knowing the warning signs, and supporting those impacted by abuse. On NYC Go Purple Day, I reaffirm my commitment to standing with survivors, uniting with advocates, and working with my colleagues in government to put an end to domestic violence.”

About the Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence

The Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence develops policies and programs, provides training and prevention education, conducts research and evaluations, performs community outreach, and operates the NYC Family Justice Centers. ENDGBV collaborates with City agencies and community stakeholders to ensure access to inclusive services for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence. For more information, visit nyc.gov/ENDGBV or visit us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.