On Thursday, the Casper Police Department is encouraging the community to wear purple, to show support for survivors of domestic violence.

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It's a chance to show solidarity for those who have experienced domestic violence first-hand.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, "Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) was launched nationwide in October 1987 as a way to connect and unite individuals and organizations working on domestic violence issues while raising awareness for those issues. Over the past 30+ years, much progress has been made to support domestic violence victims and survivors, to hold abusers accountable, and to create and update legislation to further those goals."

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 33.9% of women in Wyoming, and 30-5% of men, have experienced intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence, and/or intimate partner stalking in their lifetimes.

Additionally, an estimated 16.3% of Wyoming women are stalked in their lifetimes.

In 2019, 2,037 domestic violence incidents were reported to law enforcement and more than 55% of these incidents resulted in an arrest. Almost 88% of these incidents were classified as assaults.  Many other incidents went unreported. Although this number is comparatively small, it is important to recognize Wyoming is the least populous state in the nation.

Read More: Behind Closed Doors: Domestic Abuse in Casper Details Complexity of Emotions

The color purple has been chosen as the month's color for multiple reasons.

According to the All Against Abuse website, "the color purple became associated with the strength of women in the United States who fought to gain the right to vote in the early part of the 20th century. They chose the colors purple, white and gold to wear when they petitioned for their cause because those were the colors of the National Women’s Party."

Additionally, the website stated, in 1978 more than 100,000 women marched in Washington D.C. in support of equal rights. Many of these women wore purple as a sign of solidarity.

"The U.S. Military awards a purple heart to those who have been wounded in service," All Against Abuse wrote. "According to Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara, 'for survivors of Domestic Violence, who may also be wounded both physically and emotionally, the color is meant to be a symbol of peace, courage, survival, honor, and dedication to ending violence.'

For these reasons and more, the Casper Police Department are encouraging Casper community members to wear purple, to show these survivors of domestic abuse that they are not alone.

The Casper Police Department has a Victim Services Unit, available to anybody who is the victim of domestic violence. It can be reached at 307-235-8347.

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