About Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence Impacts Every Community

Domestic violence occurs regardless of age, race, ethnicity, mental or physical ability, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status and religious background. Victims come from all walks of life but most often are women.

Power and Control

Battering constitutes a pattern of behavior that includes the use or threat of violence and intimidation for the purpose of gaining power and controlling another person.

Power and Control Wheel

Physical and sexual assaults, or threats to commit them, are the most apparent forms of domestic violence and are usually the actions that allow others to become aware of the problem. However, regular use of other abusive behaviors by the batterer, when reinforced by one or more acts of physical violence, make up a larger system of abuse. Although physical assaults may occur only once or occasionally, they instill threat of future violent attacks and allow the abuser to take control of the woman’s life and circumstances.

The Power & Control diagram is a particularly helpful tool in understanding the overall pattern of abusive and violent behaviors, which are used by a batterer to establish and maintain control over his partner. Very often, one or more violent incidents are accompanied by an array of these other types of abuse. They are less easily identified, yet firmly establish a pattern of intimidation and control in the relationship.

Loss of Personal Freedom

Domestic violence robs women of their fundamental right to maintain control over their own lives. Women who are abused live in fear and isolation in the one place they should always feel safe – their own homes.


The Facts on Children’s Exposure to Violence

Too many children in the United States are growing up in homes and communities where they witness or experience violence. Repeated exposure to violence and subsequent trauma can impact a young person’s health, ability to succeed in school, their likelihood of becoming a victim or perpetrator of violence, and overall, their opportunity to stay on the right track.

Although the prevalence of children’s exposure to violence is overwhelming, there is clear evidence that simple solutions can help children to heal and thrive. We all have a role to play in preventing violence in our communities and supporting children who have been exposed to violence. Knowing the facts about children’s exposure to violence, as well as the factors that promote resilience, is the first step to changing the course for children in our communities.

Domestic and Sexual Violence and Stalking Workplace Impact

Workplace violence has gained increasing attention over the last ten years, with numerous reports of disgruntled current or former employees killing co-workers and bystanders at work. Domestic violence, sexual violence and stalking underlie a significant portion of workplace violence. A workplace becomes an easy target because the perpetrator can readily locate or access an intended victim. Domestic and sexual violence and stalking pose significant safety risks and economic impact in workplaces nationwide.