Sheriffs Go Purple for Domestic Violence!

10/17/17, by Ed Wutzer, Director of Victim Notification Services & Ron Bill, Victim Notification Services Project Manager

Every minute in the United States, 20 people are victims of domestic violence.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Now marking its 10th year, NYS’s Shine the Light on Domestic Violence campaign promotes the use of the color purple – long associated with domestic violence awareness – in creative ways to raise awareness of the issue. 

“We need to raise awareness about domestic violence and how it is negatively impacting thousands of people across the state each year,” said Gwen Wright, executive director of the Office for Prevention of Domestic Violence. “Our annual Shine the Light campaign provides individuals and communities across the state with an easy way to participate in the effort to spread awareness of this important issue, since awareness is a critical component of prevention.” 

Each October, Sheriffs around New York State light their buildings in purple to “Shine the Light.” But New York’s Sheriffs stand ready to serve and protect victims of domestic violence all year long, offering two potentially life-saving victim notification programs through the Sheriffs’ Institute.

Our Order of Protection Notification Program allows domestic violence victims to register to be notified by phone, text message, or e-mail when a Family Court Order of Protection has been served. This service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Our Prisoner Release Notification Program (powered by VINE®) allows crime victims to register at or toll-free at 1-888-VINE-4-NY to be notified by phone or e-mail in the event of an offender’s release from jail or prison. This service is also available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“Victims of domestic violence often need the kind of timely information that NYS Sheriffs’ Association Victim Services Programs provide. Both programs provide registered crime victims with critical information when they need it most. This access empowers domestic violence victims to gain a greater degree of control in their lives and to make informed decisions about their safety,” said Chenango County Sheriff Ernest Cutting, Jr. Chairman of the Victim Advisory Board.

Victims of domestic violence and sexual assault can seek help 24 hours a day by calling New York State’s toll-free hotline: 1-800-942-6906, English & español/multi-language accessibility. Deaf or Hard of Hearing individuals, dial: 711 

There also are programs that provide direct services to victims, including counseling and emergency shelter. Information about those programs is available via New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence website:, and the New York State Office of Victim Services ( also funds a network of more than 200 programs that assist crime victims across the state. 

Join the conversation using these hashtags: #ShinetheLight and #NYGoesPurple4DV


Warren County Sheriff's Office


Franklin County Sheriff's Office

Sheriffs Go Purple for Domestic Violence!