Banfield Foundation launches domestic violence PSA

Vancouver-based Banfield Foundation launched its Safer Together public service announcement (PSA) featuring professional football champion and pet advocate, Russell Wilson. Research suggests up to 89% of pet-owning domestic violence victims report their abuser has either threatened, injured or killed the family pet, and as many as 48% of victims remain in an abusive relationship because they fear for the safety of their pet. However, with an estimated 6-10% of domestic violence shelters allowing animals, the urgent need to create and grow support for pet-friendly programs is critical.

Since its inception in September 2015, the Banfield Foundation has awarded nearly $410,000 to 46 domestic violence related nonprofits, which have helped more than 4,000 pets. Earlier this year, the foundation committed to invest $1 million over four years through its new Safer Together program. This multi-faceted initiative includes a grant program, the creation of an all-volunteer Advisory Committee, continuing education for the veterinary profession, and the PSA, starring Wilson. 

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Joanna Yorke is the managing editor of the Vancouver Business Journal. She has worked in the journalism field since 2010 after graduating from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University in Pullman. Yorke worked at The Reflector Newspaper in Battle Ground for six years and then worked at and helped start ClarkCountyToday.com.