Getting in front of this very delicate and complex issue is hard. The statistics are startling. Nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. This equates to more than 10 million women and men, or one in three women and one in four men, who have experienced physical violence by an intimate partner. Studies have shown that Black girls and women are hyper-vulnerable to abuse. About 40 percent will experience domestic violence in their lifetime. These statistics are more than numbers on a page; they are our sisters, friends, mothers, aunts, Amicae and Zeta sisters, who are often silently experiencing trauma from a partner who seeks to gain and maintain power and control over them.
From the sorority’s standpoint, in a multitude of ways, we have always been at the forefront of addressing domestic violence (DV), including individual support and chapter, state and regional programming. In 2020, as part of our International Centennial President’s Capstone Project, we implemented our inaugural Domestic Violence Programmatic Initiative (DVPI) core executive team to galvanize efforts to raise DV awareness. Our program’s mission is rooted in building healthy relationships and ending intimate partner violence via cutting-edge programs, influencing policy and promoting brand aligned partnerships dedicated to the protection of women and children. Through our DVPI, our programming consists of:
The Domestic Violence Programmatic Initiative Strategic Partnership Committee is responsible for identifying and fostering partnerships with communities, foundations, government, corporations, and domestic violence organizations, both nationally and internationally, while deliberately aligning our sorority’s missions and goals, and building our profile as a D9 leader centering and highlighting this cause. The goal of these partnerships is to leverage relationships and areas of expertise to raise awareness and educate about the prevalence of domestic violence/intimate partner violence with youth and young adults and adult women – particularly Black women and women of color.