EACH year, the Hunter Valley Local Area Command (LAC) throws its support behind White Ribbon Day.
But, in 2017, the police officers will take an extra step to raise awareness about domestic violence (DV).
And, the Upper Hunter community is invited to play its part, too.
From 10am, on Monday, November 27, the March Against Violence will leave the Muswellbrook Police Station and venture to the Muswellbrook Library for a minute’s silence and the opening of the Love Bites art exhibition.
“It’s the first time we’ve done this,” Hunter Valley LAC Senior Constable Kate Hobson said.
“So, we’re hoping residents and business people, plus those who work in a variety of community services, join us.
“We’re also looking forward to seeing Love Bites, an extremely successful school-based domestic and family violence and sexual assault prevention program.
“More than 100,000 students, throughout Australia, have participated in this interactive and innovative initiative aimed at 14 to 16-year-olds.
“Love Bites consistently models respectful relationships between male and female pupils, teachers and workers.
“So, the art works are a good representation of what the kids are learning at school.”
Senior Constable Hobson said the Hunter Valley LAC was committed to breaking the cycle of DV.
“There are a lot of people in the Upper Hunter, who are against domestic violence, and just as many who can provide help to those in need,” she explained.
“Recently, Safer Pathway was rolled out in the region.
“It brings together local representatives including police, health, corrections, family and community services and education along with specialist non-government domestic and family violence services, creating a streamlined, integrated referral pathway for victims who are ‘at threat’ or ‘at serious threat’ to their life, health or safety.
“That provision is coordinated by the Hunter Valley Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service (WDVCAS).
“These days, the victims have got more support and knowledge throughout the process, which is important.
“They just want assistance and a single contact point.
“A Safety Action meeting takes place every fortnight in Singleton, too.
“All of these programs are aimed to keep the victims safe.”