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Domestic violence and abuse is a prevalent problem in our communities, as well as globally. It has existed since the beginning of civilization because the problem is not just nurture, but also nature. Aggression and violence is part of the innate makeup of the human race and it is a choice we all have whether we want to manifest it in our behavior or suppress and control it. The definition of domestic abuse is when one person in a relationship or marriage tries to control and dominate the other person by using intimidation, guilt, shame, fear or physical control.
Domestic violence is defined to include physical violence as well as domestic abuse. Prevention methods for domestic violence are police enforcement agencies , domestic violence education , and shelters for battered women and children . Contact the police or other law enforcement agency if you see or hear evidence of domestic violence. Become proactive and personally take necessary actions against domestic violence when you see a neighbor, colleague, friend or family member is an abuser or being abused.
Don’t be a silent partner to domestic violence and abuse. Encourage the neighborhood watch or home owners association to become as concerned with watching out for domestic violence as with burglaries and other crimes. Try to reach out to and communicate with anyone you believe is a victim of domestic violence or abuse. Never be silent about domestic abuse or violence. Speak out publicly against it. Try to help others become educated and informed by inviting speakers to your professional organization, house of worship, civic group or workplace.
Volunteer your time to support domestic violence counseling programs and shelters. For domestic violence education , government should expand education and awareness efforts to increase positive attitudes toward nonviolence and encourage individuals to report family violence. Form task forces to evaluate and assess domestic abuse and start to develop an action plan, as well as ways to monitor the progress. Mandate domestic abuse and domestic violence education and training in the public school system, including training for all social services and criminal justice professionals.
Advocate laws and judicial procedures at the state and local levels that support and protect battered women. How to prepare shelters for battered women and children? Establish centers where visits between batterers and their children may be supervised for the children’s safety. Adequate funding for shelters for the victims of domestic abuse and violence is of the utmost importance; providing a safe place will help more victims speak out and to give them the courage to leave their abusers.
Have a safety plan in place so you can be prepared to escape when the situation becomes dangerous. Every individual in an abusive relationship needs a safety plan. Shelters and crisis counselors have been urging safety plans for years, and police departments, victim services, hospitals and courts have adopted this strategy. Safety plans should be individualized, for example, taking account of age, marital status, whether children are involved, geographic location and resources available .
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