Domestic Violence Awareness Month: What Is Domestic Violence?
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. This month gives us the time to reflect on the lives of those who have passed away due to domestic violence and raise awareness of what domestic violence is, how to recognize it and what we can all do to end it.
What is domestic violence?
Domestic violence is defined as “violent or aggressive behavior within the home, typically involving the violent abuse of a spouse or partner.” It’s a pattern of compulsory conduct used to gain power and control in a relationship, intimate or otherwise. In Pennsylvania, 112 victims died from domestic violence incidents in 2019. Domestic violence can happen to anyone regardless of race, sexual orientation, gender or socio-economic status.
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV) provides domestic violence services 24/7. You can also reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1(800) 799-7233 or text LOVEIS to 22522.
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) provides sexual assault crisis services. Visit their website or call 1-888-772-7227 for a 24-hour hotline to be connected to a local sexual assault center. Help for sexual assault survivors is also available from the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC).
Suspected child abuse or neglect can be reported 24/7 to DHS’ ChildLine available at 1-800-932-0313.