October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Domestic violence has been a large health concern in our country, and the last year and a half of the pandemic has contributed to a rise in reports of domestic violence. The combination of imposed isolation, increased financial instability, and overall heightening of anxiety and fear, have led to this surge. This article from TIME highlights the ongoing pandemic of domestic violence ravaging our country and other countries around the world.
Domestic violence can be defined by a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one person to gain or maintain control over another. Domestic violence may occur in various forms that include: physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, economic abuse, psychological abuse, stalking, cyber stalking, verbal threats, and more. You can review this guide to learn more about different forms of domestic violence. Pre-pandemic, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, one in three women, and one in four men have suffered some form of physical violence at the hands of an intimate partner.
For both victims and those who know a family or friend who may be in a domestic violence situation, it can be hard to know what to do, when and where to help, or how to feel. It can be frightening, frustrating, and emotionally draining. Highlighted below is a list of resources we hope may be of service to help you or your loved ones:
- Casa Myrna is one of the largest Boston area organizations serving survivors of domestic violence, delivering free resources and support. They run the Massachusetts State Domestic Violence Hotline, or SAFELINK, which can be called 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-877-785-2020 to speak with a domestic violence advocate for support and resources.
- Fenway Health’s Violence Recovery Program, which features a consult hotline, is available and tailored to any in the LBGTQ community who are violence survivors.
- Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Center for Violence Recovery: A trauma-informed center to assist in healing from all forms of violence including domestic violence, with a stated focus on BIPOC services.
- Jane Doe Massachusetts Coalition against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence is another local resource that offers helpful information and links for survivors.
- DOVE: Domestic Violence Ended is a local state organization that serves survivors and providers alike. This page includes a hotline with free and confidential advocate support at 617-471-1234.
- The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) offers a searchable directory of resources by state for those who are actively in crisis or survivors looking for support networks.
- The Boston Area Rape Crisis Center is a strong community resource for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
- Family and Community Resources INC offers a local event calendar to commemorate Domestic Violence Awareness Month. BE sure to check out the Brockton Based walk for domestic violence occurring October 2!
- The Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center is also continuing its annual walk against domestic violence, occurring October 3.
- The Central Massachusetts YMCA also offers a calendar of events commemorating domestic violence awareness month and supporting community survivors.
- Mass.gov offers a list of transitional residential domestic violence programs with contact information to communicate with those programs as needed.
As always, feel free to reach out to us at the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for further support, or if you feel we can offer more resources. Have a safe and healthy October.