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Domestic abuse needs reporting

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The much-publicized instances involving celebrities and star athletes may make the issue seem distant but it is a daily problem here, too.

It has been decades since authorities on Maui considered domestic violence “a family matter.” There are agencies, including police and Women Helping Women, who stand ready to help victims of domestic violence, but they need to know about it before they can act. Victims are often reluctant to report abuse.

It is important to remember there are sometimes multiple victims from a single instance of domestic violence. Oftentimes, children who witness the physical abuse of a parent are scarred psychologically and need counseling and help to overcome the mental trauma.

Remember, there’s no shame in reporting a relative is the victim of domestic violence.

Once confronted with the fact, many victims are willing to get help. There are also agencies ready to help the abusers overcome the alcohol, drugs and anger that lead to violence.

All of us have a stake in seeing everyone is safe. Tragedies can and must be prevented. The right word to the right official or agency at the right time may be all that is needed to save a life — literally and psychologically.

* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.