October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Wendy Elam with the Coalition Against Domestic Abuse in Starke County says domestic violence takes many forms, “It could be physical abuse, it could be emotional, it could also be financial. There are different aspects, like isolation and the abuser having controlling behavior over the victim.”
She says a victim of domestic violence is abused every seven seconds, and many of these cases go unreported, “It’s just the tip of the iceberg that you hear about, and they say a quarter of your physical assaults, a fifth of your rapes, and half of the stalkings go unreported. So what you hear is just a little bit of what’s actually going on.”
Elam says if you’re experiencing abuse, the best thing to do is talk to an advocate who’ll help you make a safety plan, “It’s all confidential, free of charge, and we’ll help you. A safety plan is the main thing because you’re just trying to keep that victim safe.”
People can reach the Caring Place in Starke County at 574-772-2222 or the emergency shelter directly at 1-800-933-0466.