Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, threats, and emotional abuse. The frequency and severity of domestic violence can vary dramatically. Domestic violence is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, sexual orientation, gender, race, religion, or nationality. Intimate partner violence is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior which is only a fraction of a systematic pattern of dominance and control. Domestic violence can result in physical injury, psychological trauma, and in severe cases, even death. The devastating consequences of domestic violence can cross generations and last a lifetime. Women who suffer from intimate partner violence are at an increased vulnerability of contracting HIV or other STI’s due to forced intercourse or prolonged exposure to stress. Studies suggest that there is a relationship between intimate partner violence and depression and suicidal behavior. It is estimated that half of the women in abusive relationships in the United States are physically injured by their partners. Victims of intimate partner violence lose a total of 8.0 million days of paid work each year.The cost of intimate partner violence exceeds $8.3 billion per year. Between 21-60% of victims of intimate partner violence lose their jobs due to reasons stemming from the abuse.Between 2003 and 2008, 142 women were murdered in their workplace as a result of intimate partner violence. This amounts to 22% of workplace homicides among women. Source: National Coalition Against Domestic Violence