Did you know that one third of women in the U.S. will experience domestic violence in her lifetime?
The Violence Against Women Act, passed in 1994 and since reauthorized twice by Congress, is up for renewal. However, there has been debate in the Senate amongst Democrats and Republicans on whether to expand it or not.
“Every single minute, 24 people across America are victims of violence by an intimate partner -- more than 12 million every year. Forty-five percent of the women killed in this country die at the hands of their partner. This one shouldn't be about politics,” Democratic Sen. Patty Murray stated.
However, Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski, stressed the need for bipartisan support of the bill itself.
"I, too, believe that the Senate needs to take up the Violence Against Women Act, but I do feel strongly that we need to do it on a bipartisan basis,” she said. “This is too important an issue for women and men and families that we not address it.”
Currently, more than three women in the U.S. are murdered by their husbands/boyfriends every day. That’s over 1,100 women a year. However, women aren’t the only victims of domestic violence. Below are some common myths about the issue.
- Myth1: Only women are victims of domestic violence. Although around 95% of these victims are females, men also face abuse. However, the majority of male victims are assaulted by other men.
- Myth 2: It occurs only in poor, uneducated and minority families. Studies show domestic violence happens in all types of families, regardless of income, region, race, profession, or educational level.
- Myth 3: Alcohol abuse causes domestic violence. Abusers use drinking as one of their many excuses, but taking alcohol out of the equation will not end the violence. Alcohol/substance abuse is a separate issue. It does not cause a person to batter.
- Myth 4: Battered women like the abuse. No one asks to be abused and no one DESERVES it, regardless of what they say or do.
- Myth 5: Domestic violence abusers are violent in all of their relationships. Batterers choose to be violent to their partners in ways they would never treat others.
What can you do?