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October Is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is 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 or psychological abuse. The frequency and severity of domestic violence varies dramatically.

Domestic violence can also be called intimate partner violence. Examples of intimate partner violence are current or former spouses, boyfriends or girlfriends, dating partners or sexual partners. Intimate partner violence can occur between heterosexual couples or same sex couples. This type of violence does not require sexual intimacy.

Here are some statistics:

  • There are 10 million victims of domestic violence in the US every year.
  • 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men are physically abused by an intimate partner.
  • Intimate partner violence accounts for 15%of all violent crimes.
  • 19% of intimate partner violence involves a weapon.
  • 40% of female murder victims are killed by an intimate partner.
  • In 2008, Massachusetts declared domestic violence a public health emergency.
For more information contact: 
  1. HAVEN at MGH at 617-724-0054
  2. ncadv.org (National Coalition Against Domestic Violence)
  3. Massachusetts hotline 1-877-785-2020
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