Recognizing Domestic ViolenceKeeping Your Family Safe | Articles and News
While we live in a relatively safe, family-friendly state, domestic violence is a concerning issue in Utah. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three women in Utah will experience intimate partner violence in her lifetime; nationally, one in four women are impacted. There are at least 3 domestic violence-related suicides every month in Utah. Since 2000, domestic violence-related homicides accounted for 42% of all adult homicides. With high rates of intimate partner and family violence, and high birth rates, children in Utah are often gravely impacted: approximately 80 of Utah’s children witness their mother murdered, almost killed, or are first to find her every year in Utah. Many children who witness domestic violence never receive supportive services, increasing their risk of chronic health conditions and criminal justice involvement across their lifespan.
Recognizing the signs of domestic violence can help save lives
Warning signs of domestic violence can include:
- physical violence and aggressive behavior including stalking
- damaging property or pets
- psychological violence, such as intense and repetitive degradation,
- creating isolation and extensive financial control
- sexual violence including limiting reproductive freedom or sexual exploitation.
Resources are often limited, but there is always help available
- Utah Domestic Violence Link Line. confidential help 24/7, anywhere in Utah—1-800-897-LINK (5465) or www.udvc.org.
- Utah Rape and Sexual Assault Crisis Line 1-888-421-1100
- The National Domestic Violence Hotline www.thehotline.org 1-800-799-SAFE(7233)
- Utah Department of Human Services http://hs.utah.gov or on Twitter @UTHuman Services
- Victims of domestic violence may file a protective order at www.utcourts.gov/ocap or by contacting the LINK Line at 800.897.LINK
Careful, thoughtful safety planning with families impacted by violence is critical. Try to remember the following safety tips when supporting adults and children at risk of domestic violence:
- Always call 911 if you are worried about immediate danger
- Believe the survivor and support their right to confidentiality
- With children, make short, specific safety plans and identify safe people and safe places
- Role play calling 911
- Give children permission to act and get help
- The most dangerous time for a victim of domestic violence is 48 hours after initiating a protective order or leaving an abusive partner; safety planning is critical and emergency shelter is available throughout the state.
- Contact a Victim Advocate with the LINK line (800.897.LINK) to explore safety options
- Report child welfare concerns promptly at 855.323.3237