Changing Your Community

Home isn’t the only place affected by domes­tic vio­lence. It touches all of our lives. Because those who are abused bring their expe­ri­ences, feel­ings and atti­tudes wher­ever they go. This leads to more vio­lence in our communities.

You have the power to make a dif­fer­ence in your com­mu­nity. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Get informed about domes­tic vio­lence. There is lit­er­a­ture avail­able about domes­tic vio­lence. You can find this infor­ma­tion in books or through a local ser­vice provider.
  2. Edu­cate mem­bers of your com­mu­nity. Ini­ti­ate a Domes­tic Aware­ness Cam­paign within your com­mu­nity with the help of school admin­is­tra­tors, local busi­nesses or a local ser­vice provider. Look in your com­mu­nity for peer edu­ca­tional groups such as STAR.
  3. Make it known in your com­mu­nity that vio­lence will not be tol­er­ated and encour­age peo­ple to seek help to fig­ure out ways to express feel­ings of frus­tra­tion, anger and sadness.
  4. Com­mence con­ver­sa­tion about domes­tic vio­lence. There are many peo­ple liv­ing in vio­lent sit­u­a­tions. It is impor­tant that they know they are not alone and that they should not be ashamed. This is not a pri­vate issue. It affects the entire com­mu­nity. Chil­dren and teens exposed to vio­lence often bring this learned behav­ior to school and into the greater community.
  5. Rede­fine gen­der roles. Edu­cate to change stereo­types of women and men. Gen­der stereo­types con­tribute to domes­tic vio­lence. Often men feel because of their gen­der they have the right to con­trol women by any means nec­es­sary. Women often accept this because of the same mis­con­cep­tions about gender.
  6. Help to edu­cate the police about domes­tic vio­lence. There are train­ing pro­grams to edu­cate police about the issue of domes­tic violence.
  7. Write let­ters to local and fed­eral gov­ern­ment offi­cials express­ing the need within your com­mu­nity for domes­tic vio­lence pre­ven­tion programs.
  8. Write let­ters to local and fed­eral gov­ern­ment offi­cials ask­ing for stricter penal­ties for abusers.
  9. Write let­ters to large com­pa­nies ask­ing for their sup­port in cre­at­ing domes­tic vio­lence pre­ven­tion edu­ca­tion pro­grams in schools, pro­grams or clubs.
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