Submitted by SafeCenter – Domestic and Sexual Violence Services
There is a violent crime that strikes the very heart of home and family, it is a crime that frequently goes unreported, that is Domestic Violence. Physical and sexual assaults, or threats to commit them, are what most people think of when hearing about domestic violence and are usually the actions that allow others to become aware of the problem. However, a regular use of other abusive behaviors by the batterers, such as emotional or financial abuse, makes up a larger system of abuse. While in many cases domestic violence is not physical, that is usually the only part that is punishable by law. However, physical assaults may occur only once or occasionally, the act implants a threat of future violent attacks and allows the abuser to take control of the victim’s life and circumstances.
According to the Michigan Incident Crime Reporting in 2015 there were a total of 247 reported victims of intimate partner Domestic Violence in Shiawassee County. Some of those reported cases involved a weapon ranging from handguns, knives/cutting instrument, and personal weapons. The survivors of these domestic violence instances have a variety of injuries ranging from apparent minor injuries, no apparent physical injuries but lasting psychological scars, internal injuries, unconsciousness, and even one fatality due to domestic violence.
Domestic violence affects many people within the community, other than the perpetrator of the violence and the victim it also affects their family members, friends, and co-workers. Domestic violence is the cause for several issues inside homes along with outside the home for everyone involved. Several research studies have concluded children who live in a home where domestic violence takes place are more likely to be abusers or victims of domestic violence when they grow up. It is reported that nearly 3 million children witness domestic violence in their household every year. This example alone reveals how domestic violence can affect more than the assailant and victims.
If you, your children or someone you know has experienced a domestic violence relationship and are in need of counseling and advocacy please call SafeCenter’s 24-hour crisis line at (877) 952-7283. Our services are available to all survivors regardless of gender, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
SafeCenter is a nonprofit agency whose vision is for all individuals to experience the right to be free from violence. Their mission is to build comprehensive and sustainable community strategies to eliminate domestic and sexual violence in Clinton and Shiawassee Counties. Services include 24-hour crisis line, emergency shelter, counseling and advocacy services, and transitional housing.