Statement of Senator Barack Obama on Domestic Violence Awareness Month
"Today, I join all Americans in observing Domestic Violence Awareness Month. At a time when one in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime, it's more important than ever that we dedicate ourselves to working on behalf of the thousands of women who suffer in silence.
"Too often, victims of domestic violence don't know where to turn, or have no one to turn to. And too often, a victim could be someone you love. That's why, as a State Senator, I led the fight in Illinois to pass one of the strongest employment protection laws in the nation, ensuring that victims of domestic violence could seek shelter or treatment without losing their jobs.That's why I introduced legislation in the U.S. Senate to provide $25 million a year to domestic violence prevention and victim support efforts. That's why I co-sponsored and helped reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act. And today, I am so proud to have Senator Joe Biden, the man who wrote that groundbreaking legislation that gave so many women a second chance at life, as my running mate in this campaign.
"As President, I'll make these efforts a national priority. This month, and every month, we must fight to bring domestic violence out of the darkness of isolation and into the light of justice, especially for minority and immigrant women, and women in every community where it goes unreported far too often. We'll stop treating this as just a woman's issue, and start recognizing that when a woman is attacked, that abuse scars not only the victim, but her loved ones, sending currents of violence that ripple across our society. We need all hands on deck to address this - neighbors willing to report suspected crimes, families willing to help loved ones seek treatment, and community leaders willing to candidly discuss this issue in public and break the stigma that stops so many women from coming forward. Together, we'll make it clear that no woman ever struggles alone."