Geneseo among 25 campuses to walk for domestic violence awareness

On Oct. 15, students recognized "Walk With Me" day, an event intended to raise awareness about domestic violence and create environments in which people can speak out against it.

Gov. David Paterson and Bronx Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera, Democrat, sponsored the day's events, and students at 25 college campuses around the state participated simultaneously.

Geneseo students and faculty were given the opportunity to help support the movement by picking up purple domestic violence awareness ribbons on the College Green and participating in a silent walk from the Union patio through north side.

Before the walk, participants gathered together to hear background information on the issue of domestic violence from group organizers. For instance, participants learned that one in every four females becomes a victim of domestic violence. After returning to the green, participants formed a circle and listened to readings about domestic violence.

Junior Jon Hoose said that he came to support friends who were involved in the cause.

"It's important to make sure that people are not silent about issues such as this," said Hoose.

Senior Natalie Lomoriello agreed. "This event is important because it dismantles the silence surrounding the issue and gives the truth about the situation," she said.

The event was supported by Livingston County's domestic violence shelter, Chances and Changes.

"The women's groups on campus were contacted about the event and felt that the best way to address these issues is through community dialogue," said senior Fiona Murray, an organizer of the event. "Empowering people to talk about and combat issues like domestic violence is a way to show that the Geneseo community does not tolerate violence and will work as a community against it."

Along with the walk, volunteers placed donation boxes in residence halls through Oct. 17 for a food and toiletry drive for Chances and Changes.