Freedom from violence is a basic human right – not only for women, but for people of color, abused LGBTQ+ persons, trafficked people, battered men, and young people who suffer harm caused by the cruel assertion of power and control.
Domestic and dating violence is not just physical harm. It also includes emotional, mental, financial, and sexual abuse. It can involve the victim’s possessions, employer, family pets, extended family, and others who are targeted in the abuser’s efforts to cause harm to the victim. In all cases, the abuser uses controlling behaviors in a continuing cycle to get and maintain power and control.
The National Domestic Violence Resource Center reports that nearly 75% of Americans personally know someone who has been a victim of abuse. Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women – more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined. And while 85% of battered people are women, 15% are not. In the U.S., domestic violence is so common that it happens to someone every 9 seconds.
So why do victims stay? Why does so much domestic violence go unreported? Victims stay because they’re afraid to leave, and they leave when they’re afraid to stay. Many abusers control the finances, leaving victims with no independent means of support. And ultimately, reporting violence to the authorities increases the abuser’s anger and violence. Often, it just isn’t safe or easy for people to leave abusive situations. In addition, many batterers and victims drink and use drugs together, making escape from violence that much harder.
That’s why getting help for a safety plan is vital. L.A. CADA and other domestic violence service providers can discreetly help you or a loved one develop a safety plan and access shelter, as well as other services needed by new survivors and their children. And since domestic violence doesn’t happen in a vacuum, L.A. CADA provides separate anger management support for batterers.
During Domestic Violence Awareness Month this October, call L.A. CADA at (562) 906-2676 to learn more. No one should have to live a life of abuse and violence. No one.