Domestic and sexual violence has hit a "crisis level" according to District Attorney Andrea Harrington.
On Tuesday, she announced a new countywide Berkshire Domestic and Sexual Violence Task Force that will focus on curbing what is now growing numbers of sexual and domestic violence cases. The task force will focus on outreach, securing new resources, and providing education and training throughout the Berkshires in an effort to prevent such crimes from happening.
There were 345 flags in Park Square on Thursday, with each one representing a new local victim of domestic and sexual violence.
The Elizabeth Freeman Center placed one flag per new disclosure of sexual or domestic violence in 2018. The flags, coupled with a rally in the city's center, were intended to demonstrate the issue and the services the center provides.
One of the most important aspects of the bill is the outline of how proceedings shall be conducted when an incident of dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking is reported. Both the reporting party and responding party are given equal rights, notices and opportunity for representation throughout the proceeding.