To help raise awareness, October has been designated Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The purpose is to mourn those who have died because of domestic violence, celebrate those who have survived, and engage more people to end the violence.
Effective October 1, the Iowa Domestic Violence HelpLine (formerly the Iowa State Domestic Violence Hotline) has changed its phone number to 1-800-770-1650. The statewide HelpLine has advocates available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to assist victims and survivors with the resources and shelter they need to escape an abusive situation.
Nearly 21,000 victims of domestic abuse received services from the Crime Victim Assistance Division of the Iowa Attorney General last year, an increase of 15% from the previous year. Across the United States, 1 in 4 women (24.3%) and 1 in 7 men (13.8%) aged 18 and older have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
It is also available for friends, family or concerned citizens to call for assistance and guidance if they have witnessed or suspect intimate partner violence is happening to someone they know. For more information about the HelpLine, visit www.survivorshelpline.org.