October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The event was conceived by the National Coalition against Domestic Violence in 1981, with the intent of setting aside October to link advocates across the nation to end violence against women and children. The themes of this advocacy period are:
- Mourning those who have died because of domestic violence
- Celebrating those who have survived
- Connecting those who work to end violence
The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) joins the nation in bringing awareness to the effort to prevent the horrors of domestic violence.
We should be reminded that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), someone is physically abused by an intimate partner every 20 minutes. On an annual basis, over 10 million people experience domestic violence. Although incidents occur among all races, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientations, ages, and levels of socioeconomic status, over 85 percent of reported victims are women.
Advocates will need to be prepared to actively support reauthorization of the Violence against Women Act of 2018 (VAWA). This critical legislation-which has been in place since 1994-is up for reauthorization in FY 2018.
Resources for Information on Domestic Violence
National Coalition against Domestic Violence
U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence against Women https://www.justice.gov/ovw/domestic-violence
CDC Violence Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/intimatepartnerviolence/index.html
National Network to End Domestic Violence