GRANTS PASS, Ore. — February will be "Teen Dating Violence Action Month" in Grants Pass after proclamation from Mayor Roy Lindsay this week, according to a City statement.
Lindsay made the formal annoucnement at a city council meeting on February 5, addressing a group of students from the Women’s Crisis Support Team (WCST) WINGS Positive Youth Development and Violence Prevention program.
The proclamation calls upon the citizens of Grants Pass to observe the month and work with young people “to develop and implement policies, protocols and education about healthy relationships and relationship skills.”
Jane Marsh of the WINGS group accepted the proclamation, citing statistics from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that indicate one in three teens face some sort of abuse from dating violence — only one in three of those teens ever makes a report.
“We hope to shed light on this subject so that teens know they are not alone,” said Marsh. She was joined by fellow WINGS members Rayna Polanco, Courtney Kallai, Isabella Perez, Olivia Dimmick, Taylor Hurliman, and Jazmine Westerman.
The City said that there are more than 12 WINGS teams at seven different schools in the area. Those attending the city council meeting came from Grants Pass High and North Valley High.
Marsh told the council that teens who experience violence in dating relationships are more likely to be depressed, experience eating disorders, do poorly in school, engage in unhealthy behaviors like drug and alcohol use, and think about or attempt suicide. However, she said, education and awareness are key to preventing violence and abuse.
"I hope we can all play a part in ending this vicious cycle,” said Marsh.