National Attention on Sex Abuse Fuels Record Crowd for Syracuse Domestic Violence March

Mar 23, 2018

Hundreds of people took to Syracuse streets to stand – and march – against domestic violence.  This year’s White Ribbon Campaign awareness event took place against a backdrop of increasing attention on violence and sexual abuse against women.  Syracuse University students Gabrielle La Marco and Brooke Pohle were happy to see so many join in

“Something needs to be done and it makes me so proud that young people came out on this chilly morning, said LaMarco..

“To promote a cause,” Pohle added.  “These are like, the people who are going to be changing the way it is now.  And I feel like it’s one of those things that it doesn’t even need to happen to you to passionate about it and go out and support other people.” 

Vera House’s White Ribbon Campaign runs the entire month of March, raising support and awareness for programs that engage men on ending domestic violence.  Educator Eric McGriff says it’s important men get involved to shift the culture.

White Ribbons on trees along Clinton St. in downtown Syracuse during Vera House's march against domestic violence Friday.
Credit Allegra Craver/WAER News

“Even though we know that most men don’t commit these acts of violence, most men, even unknowingly, are complicit in the culture that lays the foundation for the violence.  They don’t address things when a rape joke or a sexual comment is made about women.  They laugh when an objectifying comment is made about women.”

McGriff wants to have one-thousand men each donate 10 dollars or more during the campaign.  Robert Schad took part in today’s march.  He sees violence against refugee women in Syracuse … and believes domestic abuse is connected to other important issues in society.

I think it’s a minor cataclysm of a much larger issue that we’re having in America.  White nationalism, racism and hatred are developing rapidly over the last several years.  It’s important that people get out into the streets and let the government know that we need change; we need real change.”

This is the 24th annual White Ribbon Campaign.  Organizers described the crowd at today’s march as larger than in previous years … with a crowd estimated at over 500 people.