Domestic Violence Still Rears Ugly Face
We did our first story about Domestic Violence right around the time of the big NFL dustup with the Ray Rice incident. We’ll talk more about sports figures and domestic violence later.
In that story we gave you a Department of Justice definition of domestic violence“as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure or wound someone.”
To refresh your memory from that article domestic violence can happen to anyone without regard to religion, gender, age, race or sexual orientation. It can affect anyone regardless of socioeconomic backgrounds or educational levels.
If you think that the people who are abused are the only ones hurt you are wrong. Family members, friends, coworkers and the community at large are all victims too.
It is still the number one cause of injury to women with one in four women in the United States reporting intimate partner violence. The numbers are higher worldwide with one in three.
Domestic homicide and suicide are often tied to abuse and are the number one and number two causes of women’s death during pregnancy in the US.
There is a one in three chance that a girl of high school age will experience violence in a dating relationship. If a woman is homeless, the chances go up substantially.
According to police statistics an abuser hits a spouse 35 times before she makes a police report.
We saw in a story recently that the number one reason why abused women don’t leave that relationship is because of family pets. I’ll keep quiet about that one.
In today’s story we will provide you with some evidence that this problem isn’t getting any better.
According to this story in the Huffington Post recently, a report released is proposing a simple way to reduce domestic violence: FREE Legal Help From Lawyers for the victims. As everyone knows, lawyers are expensive and often women in domestic abuse situations cannot afford them. That leaves them unable to get protective orders, leave their abusive partners and escape the cycle of violence. Women in abusive relationships tend to miss work because of the injury or rack up hospital bills they can never pay off.
The story about providing free or subsidized legal representation to victims says that it may reduce domestic violence and would be cost-effective in that it would likely result in lower associated health care and legal costs.
A report finds that lawyers play a pivotal role in reducing domestic violence greatly increasing a woman’s chances of receiving a protective order if she has a lawyer. With a protective order a victim is less likely to experience violence.
Each year the survey is conducted by the National Network to End Domestic Violence. The purpose is to calculate how many victims are asking for help and what services they are seeking.
In 2014 just over half of the programs were able to have an advocate accompany a domestic abuse survivor to court but only 11% reported being able to offer legal representation. The main culprit is funding cuts that have been reduced in many programs.
Of all the programs surveyed the second most common request for help was for legal representation, not surprisingly, second only to requests for housing.
The story makes the argument that not only is it the right thing to do, but also it will likely pay off in reduced overall costs.
According to this ABC news story Ray Rice wants a second chance in the NFL. Rice was reinstated the in NFL recently after winning his appeal of an indefinite suspension because of domestic violence. He spoke about his future in football on The Today Show on NBC.
The Rice incident, at least in our opinion, was a catalyst to open a discussion on domestic violence in the United States, in sports especially. Since then many cases have come forward on the professional and collegiate level of domestic abuse. These incidents have heightened awareness of the issue and prompted legislators across the country to take a much more serious look at laws on domestic abuse.
In this story from Decatur, Illinois law enforcement officials make the point that they see the same victims of Domestic Abuse multiple times. Police can help get protective orders, but in many cases the victims either dismiss the charges or if they do have a protective order, don’t call when the offender violates it. If police don’t know anything about it, they can’t do anything. So for law enforcement it is sometimes very discouraging.
And then from a legal point of view in many states, domestic violence is a misdemeanor unless a weapon is used or the victim is seriously injured. “Serious” under the law in many states means the injuries have to be life-threatening, causing loss of limb or injury to the point they became incapacitated for a while.
In many states a third conviction of domestic violence abuse raises the stakes to a felony which calls for more jail time.
If you are in a domestic abuse situation, you should have a self-defense product such as one of our defensive sprays. We have close to 200 Pepper Sprays to choose from, one of them is just right for you. They can disable an assailant for as long as 45 minutes giving you time to escape a dangerous situation.
Since domestic violence is so prevalent, we know many of our readers are victims. Share with other readers how you defend yourself so that they may learn from you.