Domestic violence survivors in Oklahoma City may now be able to rest a little bit easier with the help of a free alarm system.
When Edmond-based alarm company Castle Alert learned Palomar, Oklahoma City's Family Justice Center, has seen more than 1,500 clients since opening in February, president Jason Ledlow said he knew he could help make an impact, and victims are already starting to feel a sense of security.
Easy to install and accessible through a smart phone, the Shield security systems are now appearing in the homes of families fleeing domestic violence, in an effort to save lives.
“You hear about, it’s the estranged husband, the estranged boyfriend, the estranged fiancé, so it’s a really dangerous time,” said Ledlow about the time after a victim leaves their abuser.
To start with Castle Alert donated 50 of the Shield alarms to Palomar, and will give an additional one for every 10 systems the company sells. They hope to reach 500 by October, which is national Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Palomar counselors say this one simple piece of equipment may help shift statistics that rank Oklahoma 4th in the nation for women killed by men.
“A lot of these types of events are happening in someone’s home, and that’s supposed to be our safe place, our sanctuary, and a place that we should never feel threatened,” said Palomar Operations Manager Vanessa Morrison.
Now, if an abuser does try to come after their victim at home, the alarm will sound and notify police.
Castle Alert aims to expand the giveaway to other regions of Oklahoma in years to come, and Palomar credits community partnerships like these for helping build healthy families for future generations.
“It helps someone reestablish a sense and a perception of safety and comfort in their home again. It’s truly invaluable for our clients,” said Morrison.
“If they can have a little peace of mind physically, then hopefully that helps them with the emotional part too,” Ledlow added, “because that’s where the real healing has to happen.”
If you are in an abusive relationship and need Palomar's help, call (405) 552-1010 or click here.