Become an ally in community
Don't forget to register to become an Ally in Community.
As an Ally, you will be a leader in our community, advocating for domestic and sexual violence victims, armed with education materials to inform your congregation of ways to not only recognize victims, but to help them, too.
victims in the community
Living in a safe community lends itself to assuming everyone in your community is as safe, secure and healthy as you and your family. Yet, 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have been victims of some sort of physical intimate partner violence and 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men have been victims of sexual violence. That is thousands of victims living in our community, most blending in as if they are as healthy and happy as non-victims.
In 2016, there were 877 reports of sexual violence in Travis and Williamson counties and 9,798 reports of domestic violence. Hope Alliance provides services to approximately 3,500 victims each year. These statistics are proof of the need for community members to take a stand against domestic and sexual violence. Just because this violence tends to occur behind closed doors, doesn't mean the victims don't deserve your help!
leaders in our community
Domestic and sexual violence are not family issues. These types of violence don't stay "behind closed doors." They affect nearly all aspects of our community. Domestic violence costs an estimated 5 billion in mental and physical health care costs and 8 million paid work days each year.
Not only do domestic and sexual violence have a monetary impact on our community, they also present safety risks to unintended victims. Domestic violence calls are some of the most dangerous call a police officer can take. In 2016, 581 Texas officers were injured during a domestic violence call out of the 4,754 total officers injured the entire year.
In Texas during 2016, perpetrators killed 146 intimate partners, 99 of them mothers, leaving 253 children without a mother. 72% of those children were minors, requiring CPS involvement. During the same year, perpetrators killed 24 family members and friends, including 13 children, during the murders of their current and former intimate partners.
All of these are costs to our community that are rarely considered. Beyond the financial burden, community members run a risk of becoming a victim simply by being a friend of family member of a domestic or sexual violence victim.
This doesn't have to be the way it is, though. It will take our entire community to stand against perpetrators, to demand tougher sentencing (only 3% of reported rapists will ever spend a day in jail), and required primary prevention education to be taught in all grades of school. Speaking out against domestic and sexual violence sends a message that it is unacceptable and something needs to be done community wide to affect change.
As an Ally in Hope, I have pledged to:
- Know the facts about domestic and sexual violence and spread them widely.
- Recognize domestic and sexual violence are major issues in our community.
- Support Hope Alliance and the victims of domestic and sexual violence in our community.
- Speak out against domestic and sexual violence
- Educate my friends and family about the prevalence of this violence in our community and discuss ways that our community can promote healthy relationships, provide support to victims and send a clear message that the violence is not ok.
- Have the courage to look inward. Question your own attitudes and make a positive change when necessary.
- Recognize that teaching healthy relationships begins at home.
signs that someone may be a victim of abuse
remember, you may be one of the few people who see the victim in a vulnerable state.
Signs to be aware of:
- Does the victim have visible injuries, such as black eyes, bruises or broken bones?
- Does the victim tend to miss work or services because of frequent "accidents?"
- Does the victim's partner exert an unusual amount of control over their activities?
- Do you notice the partner controlling family finances, the way victim acts or dresses or the victim's contact with family members and friends?
- Does the partner ridicule the victim publicly? Do members of your faith community ignore this behavior, even though they sense the volatile nature of the comments?
- Have you noticed changes in the victim's or the children's behavior? Do they appear frightened, exhausted or on edge? Do the children seem to upset easily? Are they experiencing sudden problems in school or other activities?
Domestic Violence in our community-Know the facts!
- 196,564 incidents of family violence in Texas
- 9,798 reports of domestic violence in Williamson and Travis Counties combined
- 146 Texas women were killed by their intimate partner in 2016
- 40% of women killed in 2016 were in the process of leaving their relationship or had made attempts to leave
Sexual violence in our community-know the facts!
- 19,045 incidents of sexual assault in Texas
- 877 sexual assaults in Williamson and Travis counties
- 13% of the victims were male
- 15 to 19 year old age bracket had the highest number of offenders
- In 84.7% of the assaults, it was reported that neither drugs nor alcohol was involved
- 73% of assaults occurred in a home