March 2019: Celebrating Women’s History Month
Women have shaped the nation’s history in many critical moments. From seeking advanced educational opportunities, to entering the workforce, making breakthroughs in science and industry, and pioneering new legislation…the strength, tenacity, and courage of thousands – if not millions – of women have inspired change throughout history.
The Battered Women’s Movement of the 1970’s is one such remarkable piece of women’s history in the United States. Prior to the 1970’s, the great need for domestic violence related advocacy services was not at the forefront of community conversations or legislative agendas. In fact, in a general sense, the topic of domestic violence (or “domestic battery” as it was previously referred to) was considered a taboo topic – not to be discussed outside of one’s home. In fact, prior to the 1970’s, shelter services for victims of domestic violence was nonexistent. At that time domestic violence, a prevalent and deep-rooted issue in society, was affecting millions of households each year.In many cases, women did not have the support systems, services, or options in place to seek help for themselves and their children in the aftermath of abuse.
Finally, in 1974, the country’s first documented women’s shelter opened, providing critical safety and options for battered and abused women. It was just the beginning. By the end of the 1970s, there were about 250 shelters for abused women across the nation; including the shelter operated by the Region 4 Council on Domestic Violence (now known as Someplace Safe) in Fergus Falls. Today there are several thousand domestic violence organizations throughout the United States, with many offering shelter services. As the years have went on, so have the advances to the Battered Women’s Movement, including improved medical and legal responses to domestic violence, the development of protocols, improved legislation, and further protections for all victims.
This March, during Someplace Safe’s 40th Anniversary year, we invite you join us in observing Women’s History Month as a way to recognize the vast amount of contributions women have made not only to our organization, but also to our country, history, and society. For more information on Women’s History Month, please visit: https://womenshistorymonth.gov/ or https://womenshistory.si.edu/about.
To read more about the history of Someplace Safe click HERE.
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