WHEREAS, a community without abuse and violence is a dream we all share; and

WHEREAS, any form of mistreatment of another is abuse and all people have the moral and legal Right to Live Free of Abuse and Violence; and

WHEREAS, each of us must come to understand that it is within our personal power to choose not to use abuse and violence to resolve conflict; and

WHEREAS, we recognize that respect for ourselves and others is key to developing healthy relationships at every age and in all circumstances; and

WHEREAS, the principal of non-violent resolution of conflict must be taught to our children and practiced within each of our families; and

WHEREAS, verbal and emotional abuse can be just as damaging as physical violence to a person’s self worth, creating scars that are carried for the rest of his/her life, and

WHEREAS, verbal abuse such as name calling, insulting, and belittling frequently escalates into simple force like pushing, grabbing or slapping, and the worst scenario is the escalation to rage, serious violence, and even murder, and

WHEREAS:  we, together with communities around the country and overseas, recognize the Hands & Words Are Not For Hurting Project’s Pledge is an effective tool, a key piece of the puzzle in abuse and violence prevention education; and

NOW, THEREFORE, Anna M. Peterson, Mayor of the City of Salem, do hereby proclaim the week of October 21 through 27, 2012, to be the 15th Annual National


in Salem, and encourage all citizens of Salem to join Hands & Hearts to unite as a family and a community to Pledge, both privately and publicly, that

“I Will Not Use My Hands Or My Words For Hurting Myself Or Others”®

Dated this ­­­__ day of October, 2012