Commemorative purple ribbons will be on Erie County Sheriff's vehicles for October as part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Chief Scott Joslyn says, simply put, domestic violence is any behavior used by an abuser to gain control over their victim.
"It doesn't need to be physical, emotional. There's no limitations. It doesn't know socioeconomic background. It doesn't know borders, town lines, county lines. Every family, and every socioeconomic area, can experience domestic violence," Joslyn said.
The Family Justice Center's executive director, Mary Travers Murphy, says survivors often tell her that they thought they were just in a rocky relationship, or that their partner had anger issues.
"Nobody, but nobody, but nobody, deserves to be in an abusive relationship. It's not your fault, and you're not responsible for the abuse. And perpetrators, and this is all about power and control, are very good at brainwashing their victims into believing it is their fault, and they are responsible for it, and they deserve this. And our message is absolutely not. Reach out and talented domestic violence advocates are here to help," Muphy said.
The Sheriff's Domestic Violence hotline number is 716-858-7999. It's staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.