Chargers stepping up to stop teen dating violence - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Chargers stepping up to stop teen dating violence

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The Chargers are teaming up with San Diego County in an effort to stop violence in teen relationships.

The goal of the program is to promote a message for healthy relationships. The program is joined by Chargers kicker Josh Lambo and teammate Jerry Attaochu to tackle teen dating abuse. Working with the district attorney’s office, they are coordinating with other advocates for this year’s Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.

“As the posters say, now is the time for parents to talk to their teens about healthy relationships,” said San Diego County District Attorney Bobbie Dumanis.

Last year there were 73 teenage domestic violence cases referred to the District Attorney's office, averaging about 6 every month. The Strong Hearted Native Women's Coalition says tribal communities have the highest rate of abuse.

"We hope this will broaden the access for you to reach out and get help and access resources," said Keely Linton, Strong Hearted Native Women's Coalition.

One advocate says she wishes this help had been available for her when she was a teenager.

"As a 16-year-old young girl, I mistook a lot of the early red flags and warning signs for love. Had I known, that ultimately might've been something different. It would've caused me to take a second look at what I thought was very normal," said Jessica Yakka, President of San Diego Domestic Violence Council.

It’s a cause linebacker Attaochu says he was honored to promote.

“It's so awesome that we can partner up for this cause and really inspire youth to be open about domestic violence," said Attaochu.

The event shows that the players reach goes far beyond football.

"As I was growing up, when I was a teenager, if one of my role models when I was playing soccer brought up an issue I certainly would've looked into it. I think that's why the NFL is so much more important off the field then on the field," said Lambo.

For anyone needing help, the National Domestic Violence Hotline number is 1-800-799-7233.

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