Arsenal employees hit the streets to prevent domestic violence

ROCK ISLAND -- Civilian and military employees at the Rock Island Arsenal took to the streets to raise awareness about domestic violence.

On Thursday, October 12, workers took part in the "Join the Fight" march. As marchers headed west down Rodman Avenue, they chanted and picked up more participants from the Arsenal workforce.

The event was planned to mark Domestic Violence Awareness and Prevention Month.

"It truly is a silent killer out there, because a lot of folks don't want to talk about it. They're embarrassed. They may accept the conditions that they're in," said Col. Kenneth J. Tauke, garrison commander.

The Family Advocacy Program is the congressionally designated program responsible for preventing and responding to child abuse, neglect, and domestic violence in military families.

Samantha Mathew is an advocate for service members on the Arsenal, and she says public events like this are especially important.

"I think it gives survivors or victims the courage to come out and leave that relationship. It's very hard for victims to leave a relationship, an abusive relationship, for lots of different reasons. But this shows there are people to support them, and there are people that are going to have their back," said Mathew.

For more information about the Rock Island Arsenal's Family Advocacy Program, call 309-782-3773.