The statistics are startling, so much so they are almost too painful to mention. But mention of them must be made so the real pain they represent may be exposed, dealt with, and ideally, eliminated altogether. According to the Family Crisis Center (FCC) in Ada, approximately four million women have been physically abused by a husband or partner in the last twelve months. Oklahoma currently ranks fourth in the nation for the number of females murdered by males.

These numbers are tragic enough, but there are economic consequences as well. According to the FCC, family violence costs the nation five to 10 billion dollars each year in expenses related to health care, law enforcement, and loss of productivity in the workplace.

No segment of society is immune. People of all races, cultures, and religions are affected regardless of their economic status or place of residency. As anyone at the Family Crisis Center can attest, our area is certainly no exception.

In 1981 the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence designated October National Domestic Violence Awareness month. Organizations at local, state and national levels are hosting activities in honor of victims who have lost their lives as a result of domestic violence, and in honor of survivors and those who are working to end domestic violence.

Tuesday, a silent victims’ display along with agency information booths will be open to the public at East Central University’s University Center from 9 a.m. till noon. Wednesday is “Wear Purple Day” for Domestic Violence Awareness, in which, as the name implies, purple is worn to call attention to the problem. Businesses are particularly encouraged to participate.

Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 3 p.m. “Remembrance and Celebration of Victims and Survivors” program will be held at the lawn in front of ECU’s University Center.

These are all worthwhile events and serve the useful purpose of calling attention to a problem that has too long been in the shadows. For further information, phone (580) 436-3504.