Gateway: News

Traveling exhibit reveals stark reality of domestic violence

Domestic Violence Awareness Month has the Clothesline Project’s “Break the Silence” T-shirts on display at the Gig Harbor Civic Center. The T-shirts carry powerful messages about domestic violence and the pain it causes.
Domestic Violence Awareness Month has the Clothesline Project’s “Break the Silence” T-shirts on display at the Gig Harbor Civic Center. The T-shirts carry powerful messages about domestic violence and the pain it causes. Staff photographer

The City of Gig Harbor is raising awareness about domestic violence this month with a traveling exhibit on display at the Civic Center.

The exhibit, called the Clothesline Project, is currently on display in the Civic Center hallways. The exhibit is open during regular business hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The city is serious about the issue of domestic violence. In 2004, the city set up the Domestic Violence Kiosk at the Civic Center. At the kiosk, victims can apply for a protection order without having to travel outside the city.

“The numbers keep rising every year,” court administrator Stacy Colberg told the Gig Harbor City Council at its recent meeting.

It began with numbers around 80 applications a year, but now there are more than 100 applicants for protection orders, on average.

The Clothesline Project began in Cape Cod, Mass. in 1990 as a way to address the issue of violence against women. Women who have experienced issues of violence can design a shirt and then put it on display as a testimony.

“Participating in this project provides a powerful step towards helping a survivor break through the shroud of silence that has surrounded their experience,” the city said in a press release. “It is the very process of designing a shirt that gives each person a new voice with which to expose an often horrific and unspeakable experience that has dramatically altered the course of their life.”

To learn more about the traveling exhibit at clotheslineproject.org.

Domestic Violence Awareness month started with the Day of Unity held in October 1981 and organized by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Events in Pierce County are being organized through the YWCA and are listed on the organization’s Facebook page at Facebook.com/ywcapiercecounty.

The Clothesline Project exhibit is on view at 3510 Grandview St., Gig Harbor.

Karen Miller: 253-358-4155

karen.miller@gateline.com

@gateway_karen

  Comments