DVIS launches discussions on identifying abusive relationships and what to do if in one

TULSA, Okla. — Due to an uptick of domestic violence in Oklahoma, Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc. (DVIS) is launching a new series called “DVIS Community Talks: Conversations to Confront Violence.”

People can register for the talk by clicking here.

According to the Oklahoma Domestic Violence Fatality Review Board, Oklahoma saw a 44% increase in domestic violence-related deaths in 2020. The Violence Policy Center reported that Oklahoma ranked second in the nation for the rate at which women were murdered by men.

DVIS CEO Tracey Lyall said being second in the nation is alarming.

“I’ve been here about 15 years and we’ve never been second in the country. We’ve often been in the top ten but to be second in the country is pretty alarming.”

Lyall said one in three women will experience domestic violence in their lifetime.

“I often say look around the room, pick three. Someone is going to have an intimate partner relationship that is abusive and violent,” she said.

FOX23 spoke with Danielle, who grew up watching her dad abuse her mom. She said more people need to know how domestic violence affects victims.

“More people should know, not only what it does to the victims, but what it does to the child of the victim,” she said.

Danielle said some of her earliest memories are of violence.

“I noticed my dad would hit my mom, and I didn’t understand it back then, I just knew it scared me,” she said.

“Growing up in that environment for a long time really gets to you especially after growing up and looking back like wow, that wasn’t okay,” she also said.

The first DVIS conversation will be 8:30 a.m., on Oct. 20, 2022 at Hodges Bend, near 3rd and Lansing. Community members, survivors and advocates are all invited to attend.

Oct. 20, 2022 is a special day as it is Purple Thursday, also widely known as Domestic Violence Awareness Day.

The conversation will include Tulsa County Commissioner and former KJRH anchor Karen Keith, DVIS CEO Tracey Lyall, family violence detective Amy Hall with the Tulsa Police Department and survivors of domestic abuse. The conversation will focus on identifying signs of an abusive relationship and what you should do or say if you or someone you know is affected.

Lyall said DVIS is here and wants people to reach out to them.

“Anybody can call our information and crisis line, it’s not just there for crisis, it’s there for loved one who need information,” she said.

DVIS, a Tulsa Area United Way partner agency, is the only nonprofit agency in Tulsa and the surrounding communities that provides comprehensive intervention and prevention services to women, men and children affected by domestic and sexual violence.

Services include safe housing, counseling, legal advocacy and representation, court advocacy, law enforcement advocacy, education and outreach, hospital advocacy, childcare and batterers intervention.

DVIS offers a 24-hour information and crisis line at 918-7HELP-ME (918-743-5763). Additional information can be found on their website or Facebook page.