For Immediate Release - April 25, 2016

Danielle Sicard Receives Victim Service "Special Recognition" Award For Raising Awareness Of Domestic Violence

BOSTON – During Victim Rights Month in April, Attorney General Maura Healey and the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance (MOVA) recognize individuals and organizations that have made significant advancements in victim rights and services in the state.  

Danielle Sicard, received this year’s “Special Recognition Award” for educating victim service and law enforcement professionals on the difficulties victims face when seeking help from domestic violence.

As a survivor, Ms. Sicard shares her experience with advocates, police officers, probation officers, and others to better understand the complex emotional and practical challenges victims face when they decide to take action. Her perspective helps providers realize that leaving an abusive situation is not simply an act of will – rather a multifaceted process that each victim faces to reclaim a sense of safety, independence, and stability in their lives.

“It’s incredibly gratifying to know that by sharing my story I have been able to provide a better understanding of the struggles facing survivors as they walk through the many layers of recovery”, said Ms. Sicard. “Through the ongoing support of my family and the many victim agencies along the way, I have accepted my life as a survivor without letting that define who I am and I’m incredibly grateful for their support.”

Ms. Sicard also presents at batterers intervention trainings, Employers Against Domestic Violence seminars, and a variety of community-based events to promote public awareness of domestic violence and how individuals can better help those experiencing abuse.

“Through sharing her experience with others, Danielle has improved how systems respond to the needs of domestic violence victims in the state. We are proud to recognize her and all our recipients during Victim Rights Month for their tremendous commitment to helping some of the most vulnerable members of our communities,” said Attorney General Maura Healey.

“Victim services are most effective when they are informed and guided by survivors”, said Liam Lowney, MOVA’s Executive Director. “Danielle’s personal experience and direct advocacy have helped providers and the public to understand the difficult decisions and trade-offs that survivors face – shifting the focus away from ‘why doesn’t the victim just leave?’ to ‘why does the perpetrator abuse?’. We are thrilled to recognize her extraordinary courage and commitment with this distinguished award.”

To learn more about Victim Rights Month events and this year’s award recipients, please visit MOVA’s website at www.mass.gov/mova or call (617) 586-1340.