By Christy Piña and Debralee Santos
Light up the Heights.
One thousand women plan to illuminate Mitchel Square with candles to raise awareness about women who have died in the Dominican Republic, across Latin America and here in New York at the hands of their partners.
As organized by a host of local activists, organizers and volunteers, including Nurys De Oleo, Jacqueline Guilamo and María Lizardo, the vigil has been deliberately timed to coincide with the celebration of Dominican Independence Day, on February 27th from 5 to 7 p.m.
The Mitchel Square vigil is part of a series of events across the Dominican diaspora calling for a focus on identifying and rooting out domestic violence.
Though men are also victimized, women internationally and in the United States are disproportionately impacted by domestic and intimate partner violence.
At least 357 women were murdered by a partner or ex-partner over the last four years in the Dominican Republic, according to a recent report by Dominican Political Observatory (OPD), an initiative funded through Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (Funglode).