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October 10th, 2012

This Week in Orange County 10-10-12



Orange County Executive Edward Diana
This week I joined with Safe Homes of Orange County to proclaim the month of October 2012 as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Orange County. By making this proclamation, it is my hope that attention is brought to and awareness increased for this very real and critical issue that plagues us even here in our beautiful County of Orange.

Domestic violence is a serious crime and tragically 16 Orange County women have been murdered by their significant partner since 2004 and one is still missing and presumed dead. These deaths have severe consequences on the survivors, including children, friends, neighbors, employers, and the community at large. Safe Homes is now in its 26th year of serving individuals whose lives have been affected by domestic violence and is a leader working toward the elimination of domestic violence in our community. Programs provided by Safe Homes include legal services, case management, economic empowerment seminars, support groups, teen dating violence prevention classes, and confidential emergency housing for women and their children.

In conjunction with YWCA Orange County and the Mental Health Association’s Rape Crisis Services, Safe Homes launched the recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness month with their annual display of the Clothesline Project in front of the building at 280 Broadway in Newburgh. Each t-shirt displays a message from a real woman or family member who life has been forever changed by domestic violence. The number of shirts displayed and the emotion behind the words is extremely powerful. The Clothesline will be on display in Middletown on October 11th and Port Jervis on October 18th.

To learn more about Safe Homes and the many programs they provide to help women in need, visit them online at www.safehomesorangecounty.org. If you or someone you know may be in need of their assistance, call the 24-hour hotline at 1.888.503.4673. We must have zero tolerance for domestic violence here in Orange County.

October also marks the start of Breast Cancer Awareness month. Sadly, most of us have been touched by this dreadful disease in one way or another. The American Cancer Society estimated that more than 230,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed in 2011 and nearly 40,000 women died from it. Only lung cancer accounts for more cancer deaths in women. And men are not immune to this disease, more than 2,000 cases of breast cancer occurred in men last year, accounting for about 1% of all breast cancer cases.

Early detection is the key to treating and beating breast cancer. Women should know their risk and lifestyle factors that influence breast cancer, learn how to prevent breast cancer, and speak to their health care provider about scheduling their annual screening. Women who are uninsured can turn to the Cancer Services Program Orange County supported by YWCA Orange County. This program offers no cost breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer screenings and treatment to those who are eligible. For more information, contact them at 561-8050, ext. 14.

Healthy Orange has organized an Orange County Government Making Strides team to walk at Woodbury Common on Sunday, October 21st. We’ve hosted informational breakfast meetings with the American Cancer Society and held a Pretty in Pink fundraiser dress down day for all County employees. Together, we can fight for a world without cancer.

Until next week, I wish you good health and happiness.

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