DV Awareness Month
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We would like to take this month to recognize domestic violence as a serious issue that affects men, women and non-binary individuals across the country as well as right here in Skagit Valley. According to Skagit Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services (one of our amazing community partners), domestic violence is “a pattern of abusive behavior used by one partner to gain or maintain control over another intimate partner. This is not, however, limited to physical abuse alone. There are many forms of abuse that fit this definition."
DVSAS states that 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men will experience some sort of physical violence by an intimate partner, while many more will experience other sorts of manipulation and psychological abuse. Here at the Y, we have a zero-tolerance policy for abuse. We believe in uplifting and empowering victims while promoting healthy, safe relationships.
Wondering how you can make a difference? Change is a two-step process: awareness and action. Awareness begins with the ability to identify abuse, both in your own relationships and for your loved ones. DVSAS has formulated a list of common types of domestic violence, as well as tips and solutions, which can be viewed here: https://www.skagitdvsas.org/learn-about-dv/
After education comes action. It’s important to become an ally, not a bystander. Abuse is never the victim’s fault and they deserve to be loved and treated with respect. Acknowledge what they are going through, listen, and support them no matter what decision they make. If you see a loved one or even a stranger fall victim to intimate partner violence, offer support and considering contacting a domestic violence hotline.
Skagit DVSAS 24-hour Hotline: (888) 336-9591
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233