Breaking the Cycle of Domestic Violence: Speak Up
City of San Mateo & CORA co-host Council of Cities
City mayors and local elected officials gathered for the Council of Cities in San Mateo this month at our local nonprofit, CORA (Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse), an organization that I turned to in a time of need.
CORA is the leading and sole full-service domestic violence agency, providing legal, housing, crisis counseling and mental health services in San Mateo County.
I partnered with Dr. Ferguson, CORA C.E.O and San Mateo Police Chief Barberini to bring local leaders through CORA's doors to tour the facility, meet the staff, hear client stories, and better understand domestic violence in our communities. Most city leaders had never been to CORA and were eager to learn how CORA works with police departments across the County, proactively connecting survivors to services through the referral program. Also, we were grateful to have the San Mateo Consolidated Firefighters supporting us on their famously delicious BBQ!
Speak Up Task Force
In the past few months, there have been 7 domestic violence-related deaths in our County. Following the murder of Karina Castro, a young mother of 7-year-old and 1-year-old girls on the streets of San Carlos, CORA launched the Speak Up Program to bring domestic violence prevention education and services deeper into the community by partnering with local businesses and organizations. The Council of Cities event on August 11th, marked the announcement of the Speak Up Taskforce, which aims to extend the program county-wide.
I'm excited to share, CORA's Speak Up Program is coming to the City of San Mateo, we will start our pilot program with our 600 employees. As a member of the Speak Up Task Force, I will be championing expansion of the Speak Up Program to our local business community and will be seeking community and City Council support for this initiative because we all have a responsibility to break the cycle.