Inside the FLX: Combatting domestic violence in FL

Last month tragedy struck in Geneva when 38-year-old Emily Carson was killed in a murder-suicide. The Geneva resident and Geneva General Nurse served as a reminder that domestic violence isn’t just real, but a real problem in our society as a whole.On Inside the FLX, Nina Hamilton of Safe Harbors of the Finger Lakes joined Josh Durso in-studio to discuss domestic violence and much more. Hamilton has been with Safe Harbors of the Finger Lakes for the last six years and she told viewers that the fight has really evolved since the organization was founded. “We are there to help,” she told FingerLakes1.com after the cameras stopped rolling. She went on to point out that the assistance comes at every phase. Whether that means helping someone who is personally dealing with domestic violence, or giving the tools and resources to a family member or friend of a victim. Another stereotype that Hamilton addressed was the notion that women are the only victims. She pointed out that the LGBTQ community is now being more frequently impacted by domestic violence. However, underreporting remains the biggest challenge across the board when it comes to domestic violence.Hamilton also pointed out that it isn’t always just physical abuse. Whether it’s emotional, financial, or any other number of abuses that can occur in a relationship — she reminded viewers that they are all equally important. “Leaving isn’t always the best [first step] in an abusive relationship,” she told FingerLakes1.com. Oftentimes, as an organization Safe Harbors of the Finger Lakes will advocate for victims of abuse. Whether that means working with local law enforcement, or working with the victim to get to a place where they can get out of that abusive relationship permanently. As she pointed out, the problem for the victim is getting out of the abusive relationship. That is why that is the last thing they tell victims. While it may be the first thing bystanders may think when they hear or see an abusive relationship — Hamilton said that it really is their last line of defense. As an organization, she said that they can offer so much support and help advocate for these individuals so greatly, that just telling them to leave the abusive relationship is the final piece of advice they give.”An abuser isn’t always what you expect,” Hamilton told FingerLakes1.com. Her sentiment is one that is echoed by the domestic violence advocacy groups across the board. Unfortunately, domestic violence doesn’t fit into a clean and simple demographic. It transcends every demographic one could imagine.The research also shows that those who experience domestic violence in their youth, typically boys, are four times more likely to perpetuate the violence they experienced growing up. That means those individuals are four times more likely to be involved in harming a physical partner. “It’s a matter of control for them. Ultimately, it’s about the control they feel when they’re abusing,” Hamilton said. The statistics also show that one in four women will experience domestic violence during the course of their lifetime. Hamilton said that she tells people frequently: “If you haven’t met someone, or you don’t know someone who has been involved in an abusive relationship — then you will meet someone down the road.”Her sentiment is an unfortunate truth with this issue. Unfortunately, people are dealing with this on a daily basis — and Safe Harbors of the Finger Lakes is serving communities in Ontario, Yates, and Seneca counties continually. Check out Safe Harbors of the Finger Lakes here to learn more about what they offer and how you can get involved. Safe Harbors offices in all three counties can be reached at the below numbers, as well as the above crisis hotline numbers: Ontario County Office: 315-781-1093Yates County Office: 315-536-9654Seneca County Office: 315-568-4200Hamilton urges residents to stay engaged on this subject and to continue thinking about how they can help have a positive impact on curbing this violence in our communities. Check out the entire interview below from Inside the FLX.

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