On Thursday, October 29, 2015 our entire firm had the privilege of attending this event along with many in the San Mateo community. CORA (Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse) hosted this special luncheon in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. CORA is an organization which provides safety, support and healing for individuals who experience abuse in an intimate relationship, and educates the community to break the cycle of domestic violence.
The speaker was Denise Brown, sister to the late Nicole Brown Simpson. She answered questions posed by moderator Diane Dwyer, as well as questions from attendees. Since her sister’s murder, Denise has become an adamant voice for ending domestic violence and creating awareness of abuse. Additionally, she is committed to improving the quality of living for women and children who have been victims of domestic violence.
When asked by Diane where the movement against domestic violence is headed, Denise emphasized the need to continue to work towards raising awareness. She discussed her own history and how without awareness it can be difficult to identify domestic violence and/or its signs. She herself openly discussed how she missed the signs in regards to her own sister.
While Nicole was in her marriage, Denise witnessed Nicole's husband’s anger and even witnessed a violent event in which he attempted to strangle Nicole. However, Denise thought these were isolated incidents and did not think in terms of a cycle of abuse. She wishes she knew then what she knows now.
The month of October is officially “Domestic Violence Awareness Month.” There has also been a greater push to raise awareness recently in light of the domestic violence that seems to be endemic in the professional football community. There is an ongoing ad campaign featuring celebrities and athletes with the message “No More.” However, the NFL has still been reticent to take up the cause. Denise spoke of how the NFL’s excuse was that October was their official breast cancer awareness month and that would never change. Denise’s idea? Change the month! “See what their excuse would be then,” she stated with a chuckle.
While great strides have been made, there is still much work to do. As Denise said, we must continue working to raise awareness of this issue as well as ensuring that anyone in an abusive relationship and their loved ones have resources and support, such as that provided by CORA. http://www.corasupport.org