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October 2023

National Domestic Violence Awareness and Prevention Month 

For too long, domestic violence was considered a “family issue” and was left for families to address in private. That is why, decades ago, President Biden created and pushed for the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to be passed. Today, we recognize the important roles of the public and private sectors, non-profit organizations, communities, and individuals in helping to prevent and address domestic violence and create a culture that refuses to tolerate abuse. Domestic violence affects millions of people in the United States, causes significant harm to the physical and mental health of survivors and their families, undermines their economic stability and overall well-being, and is a stain on the conscience of our country. While significant progress has been made in reducing domestic violence and improving services and support for survivors, much work remains to be done to expand prevention efforts and provide greater access to safety and healing. During National Domestic Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, we come together to reaffirm our commitment to ending domestic violence and supporting survivors.

Domestic violence is an abuse of power that tears apart the fabric of relationships and families and undermines the well-being of communities. One in 4 women and 1 in 10 men have experienced sexual violence, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime. Homicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States for women under the age of 44, and nearly half are killed by a current or former male intimate partner. During the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic violence has become a pandemic within a pandemic, with many victims facing the added pressures of increased economic insecurity, increased time in isolation with their abusers, and limited contact with their support networks. This has made it even more difficult for victims to access the lifesaving services and support they need.

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