On average, nearly 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. Domestic violence impacts millions of people each year and is one reason October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). The University of New Mexico is joining national and local initiatives to raise awareness of the domestic violence prevalence and impact; and spread the word that, together, it is preventable.
"Domestic and dating violence are community health issues, which have been minimized, hidden and even normalized for far too long,” said Jessica Holland, director of the UNM Women’s Resource Center. “The stats can be overwhelming, but I hope they can remind those who are experiencing or have experienced, interpersonal violence that they are not alone.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 1 in 4 women and 1 in 9 men have experienced contact sexual violence, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime. Preventing such statistics requires the collective voice and power of individuals, families, systems and institutions like UNM.
“Our campus is very lucky in that we have multiple confidential resources,” Holland said. “Whether it’s physical, verbal, emotional or financial abuse, whether you want to leave or are unsure, know our campus has multiple ways to support you.”
Throughout the month, the UNM Women’s Resource Center is offering trainings, healthy relationship workshops, a raffle supporting local shelter SAFE House and other virtual events aimed at supporting survivors and raising awareness of domestic violence. African American Student Services is also hosting a real talk deep dive into black twitter and pop culture. The event called “Can You Separate the Art from the Artist?” is virtual. For more info, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Oct. 15, the campus community is invited to wear purple to support survivors of domestic violence.
The LoboRESPECT Advocacy Center is also encouraging Lobos to raise awareness in their circles by posting on social media and using the hashtag #PurpleThursday #DVAM2020 #DomesticViolenceAwareness #protectthepack #UNMDVA. Follow @unmloborespect for more resources, virtual engagement, information and other ways to raise awareness.
In addition, UNM is joining groups nationwide in taking part in the #1Thing campaign. The Domestic Violence Awareness Project (DVAP) developed the #1Thing campaign to raise awareness about how one person’s actions may seem insignificant, but together a communities' collective “#1Things” can lead to real social transformation.
#1Thing you could do to address domestic violence:
- Be a caring and consistent adult in the life of a child
- Talk to loved ones about violence and oppression
- Create a culture of consent in your home
- Use social media to raise awareness among your peers
- organizations to establish
- Reach out to my local domestic violence program to learn how you can help
- Listen to and validate a survivor of trauma