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Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is here! That means fall, foliage, pumpkins, candy, costumes, brisk temperatures, races, and of course…domestic violence awareness and prevention programs!! 

Domestic violence is very prevalent within every community and society overall.  It can take a variety of different forms including physical, emotional, verbal, financial, and sexual.  These forms of abuse can happen in isolation or in conjunction with one another. 

The prevalence of domestic violence is staggeringly high.  About 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men report experiencing severe physical violence by an intimate partner, according to the NISVIS study released by the CDC in Dec of 2011.  When we look at how this violence breaks down, most times people are experiencing physical violence (of varying degrees) in isolation.  The most common co-occurring types of violence is physical combined with stalking. 

With the increase in technology, stalking has taken on many new forms.  Now it can come across with incessant texting or calls to one’s cell phone.  It can include monitoring a person’s facebook or where they ‘check in’ on four square.   Other forms can be installing video cameras into a person’s home or apartment to watch what they do when they are home by themselves.  Stalking no longer requires physical proximity to another individual.   The CDC NISVS study reported that 1 in 6 women and 1 in 19 men have experienced stalking in their lifetime.

There will be many different events happening this month to raise awareness about the prevalence of domestic violence, talk about warning signs, discuss prevention methods, and to recognize the people who have been impacted.  There are other events happening all around the city and in the neighboring towns.  Many colleges and universities put on their own Take Back the Nights, DV Vigils, speakers, and lecturers that are open to the community.  Take a moment and find one that is happening in your community or at your school and make the time to attend.  Some options include:

- Oct 3 6:00-8:00pm DV Vigil at Cambridge City Hall
- Oct 3 6:00-7:30 pm DV Vigil in Union Square in Somerville in front of  the Police Academy (220 Washington Street)
- Oct 10 6:00-9:00pm Movie and Discussion: Gaslighting  at Hingham Public Library
- Oct 11, 2012 4:00-8:00pm Open House at Mass Aliance of Portugese Speakers and Brazilian Women’s Group
- Oct 13 9:30am -12:00pm Walk to Break the Silence at Downtown Framingham Common
- Oct 13 12:00-3:00pm Feminists for Liberation presents a March to End Rape Culture and Gender  Inequality at the Boston Common Bandstand
- Oct 15 10:00-11:30am Discussion facilitated by MA Survivors Outreach at Thomas Crane Public Library in Quincy MA
- Oct 27 10:00am-3:30pm REACH PAVE Summit for teen student leaders at Simmons College

Domestic and sexual violence have extremely high prevalence rates within our communities.  Although how they present and the effects they have can be different, there are many similarities.  It is important to recognize how all forms of violence impacts both ourselves and our communities in order to create paths to prevention for the future.

Posted by stacey on 10/03 at 02:58 PM


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