Developed by: The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence, A Reza

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Content: EVE's PEACE Toolkit Ending Violence by Establishing Policies to Enhance and Create Equity Developed by: The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence 2011 With Contributions From: Angelica Reza-Wind, JD, Aleese Moore-Orbih, D. Min, and Leah Perkinson, MPH This document was supported in part by Cooperative Agreement Number 5US4CE001524-03 for the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence's Domestic Violence Enhancement and Leadership Through Alliances (DELTA Program from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent to the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Funding for this activity was made possible in part by the HHS, Office on Women's Health. The views expressed in written materials or publications and by speakers and moderators at HHS-sponsored conferences, do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does the mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government. Cover Graphic Design: ARCHETYPE
Table of Contents Introduction.................................................................................................................................................2 About the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence..........................................................3 About the Toolkit........................................................................................................................................4 What is Domestic Violence.............................................................................................................5 Domestic Violence Statistics: What We Know.......................................................................................6 Cost of Domestic Violence.........................................................................................................................7 Domestic Violence Dynamics....................................................................................................................8 Understanding Domestic Violence: The Power and Control Wheel................................................11 Common Characteristics of Abusers......................................................................................................12 Why Do Victims Stay and Go..................................................................................................................13 Myths about Domestic Violence............................................................................................................14 The Religious and Spiritual Crisis of Victims/Survivors.......................................................................15 What Faith Leaders Need to Know when Working with Victims/Survivors.....................................16 What Faith Leaders Need to Know when Working with Batterers/Abusers...................................17 Preventing Domestic Violence ...............................................................................................................18 The Faith Community and Prevention...................................................................................................27 Clergy Acknowledgements and Commitments....................................................................................28 Appendix A: Recommended Readings...................................................................................................30 Appendix B: Additional Resources.........................................................................................................32 Appendix C: 10 Things Men can do to Prevent Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault................33 Appendix D: References..........................................................................................................................34
Introduction "Faith is fundamental in ending violence against women.1" Across recorded history, religions have reflected rather than resisted their cultures' oppression of women. Religious beliefs, values and practices have helped to create and perpetuate unequal and dependent relationships between men and women in families, congregations, and societies. This denial of the full humanity of women is problem enough, but the trouble doesn't end there. Violence and the threat of violence are key means of maintaining power over and subjugating vulnerable people. Relationships based on an imbalance of power create an environment ripe for the perpetration of violence. This is true in personal, intimate and familial relationships, as well as in institutional settings and religious communities. These risks are real, and have resulted in real harm, but this is not religions' only reality; most religious traditions also hold the value of making the world a more peaceful and loving place through the values and works of compassion, love, peace and justice making. The practice of faith and spirituality not only contributes to individual moral agency; it also can serve as a foundation for the transformation of social and cultural mores and norms. As the Rev. Dr. Marie Fortune has said on many occasions, there are two choices: "Faith leaders and communities will either be a roadblock to ending domestic violence or a resource." As moral exemplars in their communities, faith leaders can promote healthy relationships. To be a roadblock requires only silent acquiescence. But to be a resource in the movement to end family violence and create healthy relationships, education and action are required. Fortunately, most religious communities already have the means to educate and act. Religious and spiritual teachings and practices can change social, cultural, and family norms by transforming minds and hearts. Damage has been done by those who have misused spiritual and religious teachings to oppress and abuse women. The challenge before us now is to call upon religious communities to help undo this damage. It is up to us to work for a just and equal society, where violence-free relationships, families, institutions and communities become the norm. Every day, Young Children are exposed to external elements that help shape their moral agency. Every day, youth are exposed to external elements that shape self image and identity. Within every culture and community, children and adults are learning how to have healthy or unhealthy relationships, to embrace or reject controlling and abusive behaviors. These messages are coming from their culture, and from the religious institutions within it. Will religious leaders and communities become the resource for healthy and safe relationships we need them to be? Or will we remain the roadblocks we have been for too long? We can make a different choice. Let's make it now. -2-
About the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCCADV) is a community of agencies and individuals who serve battered women and their children. We are committed to building a society in which our shared beliefs and institutions discourage violence against women. NCCADV was founded in 1981 with 21 participating programs and now includes over 90 member programs. Areas of support to member programs include technical assistance, training, information about public policy initiatives, and activities to increase public awareness. The NCCADV's mission is to create social change through the elimination of the individual, cultural, and institutional oppressions that contribute to domestic violence. Our vision is to empower all North Carolina communities to build a society that prevents and eliminates domestic violence. We believe that domestic violence is a pattern of domination in which perpetrators intentionally choose to cause fear, injury, and/or pain in order to gain and maintain power and control over their partners. In addition to physical violence, abuse can be sexual, emotional, economic, and can include stalking. We know that most domestic violence is committed by men, and is one form of violence against women. We believe that domestic violence is absolutely unacceptable and that perpetrators should be held accountable. We believe that patriarchy, gender inequality, and all oppressions play a central role at the individual, institutional, and cultural levels in creating and maintaining an environment which accepts domestic violence. We believe it is vital to understand and advocate for the elimination of all forms of oppression, including, but not limited to: sexism, racism, and homophobia. We believe it is critical to serve all domestic violence survivors, regardless of race, age, class and ethnic group, sexual orientation, gender identity, mental and physical abilities, religious and spiritual beliefs, and immigration status. We know oppression comes in all forms and leads to secondary issues for survivors; we will strive to serve all survivors of domestic violence and their respective needs. We believe that through the power of our shared experiences and collective voice, we can work together to create individual, institutional, and cultural change. We will work intentionally and actively to create safe spaces for survivors of domestic violence. We believe the voice and experience of survivors must be the foundation of our work, and that the domestic violence movement can change society. -3-
About the Toolkit In 2006, as a part of its work on the national CDC-funded DELTA Collaborative, the NCCADV began the process of designing and implementing a 10-Year Plan to Prevent Domestic Violence in North Carolina. The DELTA State Steering Committee, including local domestic violence services providers, survivors of domestic violence, allied professionals, researchers and policy makers from across the state, developed a data-driven, evidence-based 10-Year Plan to Prevent Intimate Partner Violence (State Plan) which is available on NCCADV's website at The State Plan was completed in April 2009, and outlines strategies that will increase state and local capacity to plan, implement, evaluate and support strategies that prevent first time perpetration of domestic violence. The State Plan includes 13 endorsements from government entities and statewide organizations. These endorsements reflect broad support, investment, and belief in the idea that domestic violence is a preventable public health problem rather than an inevitable reality. As part of the State Plan, NCCADV is partnering with faith leaders across the state to tailor existing, locally developed curricula to assist faith leaders in supporting healthy relationships among members of their faith community. Another component of the State Plan implementation is the development of this toolkit, EVE's PEACE Toolkit, for use by faith leaders to clarify best practices and model policies in identification, referral response and prevention of domestic violence. The goal of the toolkit is to increase the capacity of among faith leaders and communities to engage in work which shifts the norms, attitudes and beliefs of individuals, peer groups, families and communities to increase support of healthy relationships and to improve the response to domestic violence within their congregations. The toolkit can be used independently and in addition to training on preventing and responding to domestic violence. -4-
What is Domestic Violence? Domestic violence is when two people are in an intimate relationship and one person uses a pattern of coercion and control against the other person during the relationship and/or after the relationship has terminated. It often includes physical, sexual, emotional, or economic abuse. Every person is capable of abusive actions, but batterers establish systems of control. Domestic violence is intrinsically connected to the societal oppression of women, children, people of color, people with disabilities, people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, elders, Jewish people, and other marginalized groups. While oppression functions in similar ways regardless of which group is targeted, different target groups have unique experiences of oppression stemming from their specific historic, cultural and social experiences and realities. The work to end domestic violence must necessarily include the fight against all oppressions. -5-
Domestic Violence Statistics: What We Know Nationally: On average more than three women a day are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends in the United States. In 2005, 1,181 women were murdered by an intimate partner.2 In 2008, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published data collected in 2005 that finds that women experience two million injuries from intimate partner violence each year.3 Nearly one in four women in the United States reports experiencing violence by a current or former spouse or boyfriend at some point in her life.4 Women are much more likely than men to be victimized by a current or former intimate partner.* Women are 84 percent of spouse abuse victims and 86 percent of victims of abuse at the hands of a boyfriend or girlfriend and about three-fourths of the persons who commit family violence are male.5 The United States Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates that 3.4 million persons said they were victims of stalking during a 12-month period in 2005 and 2006. Women experience 20 stalking victimizations per 1,000 females age 18 and older, while men experience approximately seven stalking victimizations per 1,000 males age 18 and older.6 Women of all ages are at risk for domestic and sexual violence, and those ages 20 to 24 are at the greatest risk of experiencing nonfatal intimate partner violence.7 North Carolina: Of the 627 North Carolinians who died as a result of homicide in 2008, twenty percent were associated with domestic violence.8 More than half of all female homicides were domestic violence related, while less than one-tenth of male homicides were domestic violence related.9 The highest percentage of domestic violence related homicides were white and black females.10 In 2008, North Carolina ranked 4th in the country in the number of per capita homicides committed by men against women.11 For the fiscal year 2009-2010, there were 120,666 calls made to domestic violence service providers and that they served 66,320 victims of domestic violence.12 *Throughout the toolkit, we will use the pronoun "she" when referring to victims/survivors of domestic violence because research has shown women are more likely to be victimized than men. However it is important to note that men can also be victims of domestic violence. -6-
Cost of Domestic Violence The notion that domestic violence is a "private" problem is harmful. It's harmful because it glosses over the reality that domestic violence is a widespread social problem with far reaching costs. . In other words, the effects of domestic violence go far beyond the household. For example: The costs of intimate partner rape, physical assault, and stalking exceed $5.8 billion each year13 o Nearly $4.1 billion of which is for direct medical and mental health care services. o The total costs of IPV also include nearly $0.9 billion in lost productivity from paid work and household chores for victims of nonfatal IPV and $0.9 billion in lifetime earnings lost by victims of IPV homicide. o IPV victims also lose a total of nearly 8.0 million days of paid work--the equivalent of more than 32,000 full-time jobs--and nearly 5.6 million days of household productivity as a result of the violence. Of adult female IPV victims, 35.3% who were stalked, 21.5% who were raped, and 17.5% who were physically assaulted lost time from paid work Women raped by an intimate partner (21.5%) lost an average 8.1 days from paid work Victims of IPV physical assault (17.5%) lost 7.2 days on average per victimization Among IPV stalking victims (35.3%) , 17.5% lost days from household chores Victims of IPV rape lost the largest average number of days from household chores (13.5), followed by stalking (12.7) and physical assault (8.4) victims The largest component of IPV-related costs is health care, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the total costs. o Of the estimated 5.3 million rapes, physical assaults, or stalking incidents by intimate partners each year, nearly 1.5 million result in some type of mental health counseling. o The total number of mental health care visits by female IPV victims each year is estimated to be more than 18.5 million Among welfare recipients, between 12% and 23% report having experienced physical violence from an intimate partner in the previous 12 months, and more than two-thirds report serious physical abuse in their lifetime.14 The lifetime prevalence of domestic violence among welfare recipients is almost triple the rate found among women in the U.S. population.15 -7-
Domestic Violence Dynamics Many people think that domestic violence is about losing control and anger however, domestic violence is about a pattern of behavior in which the batterer seeks to gain and maintain power and control over another. The abuser wants to dominate and control their current or former partner and uses different tactics to gain and maintain power and control over them. Domestic violence is often thought to be caused by alcohol abuse, drug abuse, stress or mental illness but this is mistaken notion. Domestic violence is a learned behavior. Abusers have learned abusive, manipulative techniques and behaviors that allow them to dominate and control their current or former partner.16 Tactics that abusers use to gain and maintain control over their partner can vary as well as the frequency and duration of incidents of violence. Incidents of violence may be infrequent or frequent, prolonged or brief, severe or mild. Abusers may use many tactics ranging from subtle intimidation to serious injury and even death to control their current or former partners. Common tactics abusers may use are: Physical abuse is the intentional use of physical force with the potential for causing death, disability, injury, or harm.17 Physical violence can include: Shoving, slapping, hitting, pushing, grabbing, punching, backhanding Kicking, kneeing, strangling, biting, hair pulling, twisting arms Assault with weapons Holding, tying down, standing in doorway or taking keys so partner cannot leave, banging or pinning the partner against a wall Emotional and psychological abuse involves trauma to the victim caused by acts, threats of acts, or coercive tactics. 18 Emotional and psychological abuse can include: Manipulating, intimidating, humiliating Name calling, put downs, threatening, blaming Exhibiting extreme and controlling behavior, jealousy or possessiveness Misuse of spiritual beliefs and sacred texts to control partner Forcing servitude Isolating the partner from friends or family or controlling contact with others Ridiculing or insulting the partner's beliefs Threatening harm to self or suicide Threatening to expose the partner's personal information against her will (e.g. sexual orientation if the partner is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender; past or current criminal behavior, etc.) -8-
Financial/Economic abuse involves acts the abuser does to control the victim by ensuring the victim has financial dependence or shifting the responsibility of financially supporting the family onto the victim while at the same time denying the victim the ability of doing so or obstructing the victim from doing it.19 Financial/economic abuse can include: Misusing, stealing or extorting the partner's financial resources Destroying the partner's property or possessions Refusing to help the partner when they are sick or in need of medical care, or limiting access to insurance or prescriptions Preventing the partner from working Taking the partner's important papers or documents Controlling partner's access to financial assets (insisting that all assets be in one partner's name) Ruining the partner's credit Sexual abuse is when the abuser coerces, attempts to coerce or forces the victim to participate in unwanted sexual activities. Sexual abuse can include: Pressuring, coercing or forcing sexual activity Pressuring to get pregnant or to get an abortion Attacking sexual parts of the body or hurting partner during sexual acts Fondling, forced sodomy or sadistic acts Calling the partner sexually degrading names Forcing unwanted sexual acts Forcing sex using objects or weapons Accusing partner of infidelity, treating partner as sex object Pursuing sexual activity when partner is not fully conscious Coercing partner to have sex without protection against pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases Abuse through the children occurs when the abuser uses the victim's children as a means to either gain or maintain power and control over the victim. Abuse through the children can include: Harming/kidnapping or threatening to harm/kidnap children Using children to monitor partner's activities Criticizing parenting skills Forcing children to witness or take part in violence Threatening to report partner to child protective services or using the courts to continue the abuse Abusing the children in order to threaten or emotionally abuse the adult partner Using custody disputes to maintain contact through the court system Threatening to use information about partner's sexual orientation or gender identity to affect custody -9-
Spiritual Abuse is when abuser uses spirituality or religion to establish power and control over the victim20. Spiritual abuse can include: Misuse of scripture to justify abuser's behavior Misuse of spiritual beliefs and sacred texts to control partner Blame the victim's lack of religious commitment or practice Not allowing her access to her religious community Talking badly about her within her religious community in an effort to discredit her Forcing the victim to convert or practice another religion against the victim's will Using her religious leaders/community to convince her to stay in an abusive relationship Stalking can be defined as a pattern of repeated, unwanted attention, harassment and contact.21 Survivors of domestic violence often become victims of stalking by their abuser after they leave their abusive relationships. Stalking can include: Going to the survivor's home or place of employment Following the survivor Repeated unwanted contacts Sending unwanted gifts Hiring a private investigator or soliciting someone to stalk/follow on their behalf Disabling or tapping phones or electricity Vandalism Using the internet to track communications, activities, or financial information Threatening members of the survivor's support system - 10 -
Understanding Violence: The Power and Control Wheel The Domestic Abuse Intervention Project, Duluth, MN created a power and control wheel to illustrate teach others how abusers use various forms of violence to establish and maintain power and control over their current or former intimate partner. 22 - 11 -
Common Characteristics of Abusers As mentioned earlier, every person has the capability of being an abuser so we should remember that there isn't one "type" of person that abuses. Abusers come from all social economic levels, race, ethnicities, sexual orientation, etc. They can be law-abiding, appear to be good providers and upstanding members of the community. However, even though there isn't a "type" of person who is more likely to be an abuser, there are certain traits that are common to abusers. Below are some of the most common characteristics of abusers*: Has abused a partner in the past or may have grown up in a violent home Quick involvement including proposing marriage or wanting to move in together in order to gain control over the partner Lack of empathy Narcissism and considers self superior to others Lack of an ability to trust or nurture other people Isolation, fear of close relationships or lack or relationships Hypersensitivity, jealousy and possessiveness May be charming to others and appears to be a good partner or parent but is abusive in private Denies and minimizes violence incidents or acknowledges a family problem but denies violence Holds rigid, traditional views of sex roles and parenting and a negative attitude towards women Makes all decisions regarding family and money Claims to be the "real" victim who had to act violently in self defense. Makes excuses for the violence such as their partner "bruises easily," "was hysterical," "was drunk or high," or "it was an accident" Attempts to institutionalize the victim or convince others that the victim is mentally ill Threatens to kill their partner or to commit suicide *Please keep in mind that if someone displays one of the characteristics it does not automatically make them an abuser, generally abusers tend to display more than one of these characteristics. - 12 -
Why Victims of Domestic Violence Stay and Go For individuals who have never been affected by domestic violence, it may be difficult to comprehend why victims of domestic violence stay or leave abusive relationships. Often the decision is not so black and white. There are situational and emotional factors that may affect a victim's decision in staying or leaving an abusive relationship. Situational factors can include: Economic dependence Fear of greater physical danger to themselves and their children if they attempt to leave Fear of emotional damage to children Fear of losing custody of children Lack of alternative housing Lack of job skills Social isolation resulting in lack of support from family or friends and lack of information regarding alternatives Fear of involvement in court processes Cultural and religious constraints Fear of retaliation Emotional factors can include: Fear of loneliness Love Insecurity over potential independence and lack of emotional support Guilt about failures of marriage Fear that partner is not able to survive alone Belief that partner will change Ambivalence and fear over making formidable life changes - 13 -
Myths about Domestic Violence
Myth: Reality: Myth: Reality: Myth: Reality: Myth: Reality: Myth: Reality:
Domestic violence only happens to poor women and women of color. Domestic violence happens in all kinds of families and relationships. Persons of any class, culture, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, age, and sex can be victims or perpetrators of domestic violence. Some people deserve to be hit. No one deserves to be abused. Period. The only person responsible for the abuse is the abuser. Physical violence, even among family members, is wrong and against the law. Alcohol, drug abuse, stress, and mental illness cause domestic violence. Alcohol use, drug use, and stress do not cause domestic violence; they may occur at the same time as domestic violence and can sometimes increase the lethality of the violence, but they do not cause the violence. Abusers often report that they use these excuses for their violence.23 Domestic violence happens when an abuser has learned how to abuse, wants to abuse and chooses to abuse. 24 Domestic violence is rarely caused by mental illness, but it is often used as an excuse for domestic violence. 25 Domestic violence is a personal problem between a husband and a wife. Domestic violence affects everyone. About 1 in 3 American Women have been physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives.26 In 1996, 30% of all female murder victims were killed by their husbands or boyfriends.27 40% to 60% of men who abuse women also abuse children.28 If it were that bad, she would just leave. There are many reasons why women may not leave. Not leaving does not mean that the situation is okay or that the victim wants to be abused. Leaving can be dangerous. The most dangerous time for a woman who is being abused is when she tries to leave.29
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The Religious and Spiritual Crises of Victims/Survivors How Are Women in Faith Communities Impacted by Domestic Violence? In addition to concerns about their safety (and the safety of their children), domestic violence survivors often experience a crisis of faith. Not only are victims/survivors concerned about their physical safety, they are often concerned about their spirituality as it relates to their faithfulness to their religious traditions and God. By way of misuse, most religious traditions construct marriage as a sacred and irreversible relationship where divorce is a sinful act hated by God. Religious teachings also place responsibility for the health and success of marriage and family on the shoulders of wives, which often requires women to submit to men, and to see their suffering as a virtue. Survivors, who have been indoctrinated by these teachings, often feel hostage to their abuser and their religious beliefs. The thought of leaving their abuser for safety and freedom often translates into deliberate acts of sin, faithlessness, disobedience to their God and and/or sacred texts. Therefore, many women of faith struggle to choose between their safety and their loyalty to spiritual beliefs and traditions. Ultimately these women feel more guilt and shame and develop deeper harmful beliefs about themselves and God, making them even more vulnerable to the abuser. These women, across faith traditions, have spiritual dilemmas and questions that will either lead them to a place of safety, love, healing, empowerment and justice or to a place of restraint and increased potential for violence and death. Successfully wading through the dilemmas and finding healthy answers to the questions of faith requires far more resources than crisis advocates can provide. The spiritual journey, that which can help to heal them and make them whole, requires the guidance, resources and support of their spiritual leaders and communities. - 15 -
What Faith Leaders Need to Know When Working with Victim/Survivors When Working with Survivors: Victims/Survivors need to be heard and believed Victims/Survivors need help to figure out how to stay safe Acknowledge her abuse and confirm that it is not her fault Support her on her journey and through difficult processes Victims/survivors need to be asked what their needs are and have their answers taken seriously30 Don't confront her abuser without her permission Provide resources and referrals Avoid telling her what to do Victim/Survivors need prayer and spiritual direction Address the victim/survivor's religious concerns31 Don't encourage her to return to the abuser32 Victims/survivors need to be able to keep their children and to keep them safe33 Don't evaluate her, blame her or patronize her34 Beware of minimizing the danger to her,35 only she knows what her abuser is capable of Consult with colleagues in the wider community who may have expertise and be able to assist you in your response36 Continue to participate in trainings and to educate yourself about domestic violence. Be aware of your personal biases Check your assumptions about survivors and abusers at the door Don't transfer or project your issues on to the survivor When in doubt ask the survivor what she needs from you and the community Practice confidentiality Remember you are not alone: connect with your local DV programs - 16 -
What Survivors Need From Their Faith Leader and Community A Safe Place is where people are educated and understand the needs of survivors: Leaders are equipped to respond to domestic violence Congregations that are educated about domestic violence Domestic violence resources are available Domestic violence polices and protocol are valued and practiced Survivors can tell their stories and are believed Congregations stand with and support survivors Abusers are held accountable A safe place has strong spiritual practices that support and strengthen survivors on the road to safety, justice and healing: Encouragement from spiritual teachings Comfort and compassion from the community Prayers for and with the survivor Spiritual direction "removing religious roadblocks/providing resources" A safe place is a context for justice and healing37: Truth-telling ­ sharing the experience Acknowledging the violation Compassion ­ to suffer with Protecting the vulnerable from further harm Accountability for the abuser Restitution to the survivor Vindication for the survivor - 17 -
What Faith Leaders Need to Know about Batterers/Abusers Many male abusers believe their religion gives them social and spiritual privilege, power over their partners and children, and ordains their right to keep the family under their sole leadership. Given this belief system, abusers often deny responsibility for their actions, blame their partner's lack of religious commitment or practice for their own abusive behavior, and misuse scripture to justify their abusive behavior. Some abusers also believe their leadership in and financial contributions to the faith community should buy them blind support; or at the very least, forgiveness from the community and its leaders. Often faith leaders think they have to choose between helping the survivor and the abuser. Both survivor and abuser need help, guidance, and support from their faith leader and community. But their needs are different! The best service you can provide for an abuser is to hold him accountable for his choices and actions! When working with abusers: Do not pursue couples' counseling with him and his partner if you are aware that there is abuse in the relationship38 Set clear boundaries of self-care and avoid triangulation, or setting up a dynamic in which one partner feels like you are siding with another Acknowledge your limitations in helping him change behavior Refer him to an abuser treatment program Do not minimize his behavior Do not allow the abuser to justify abusive behavior with scripture Help the abuser understand abusive behavior as sinful as well as criminal Help the abuser understand his behavior as a violation of covenant with his partner, congregation and God Help the abuser understand repentance, forgiveness and restoration is a long process that belongs completely to the survivor Help the abuser understand that his desire or need for everyone to forgive, forget and move on is more of his controlling behavior and misuse of spiritual teachings Reinterpret texts the abuser maybe using to justify his behavior Do not approach the abuser or let the abuser know that you know about the domestic violence unless you have the victim's permission, she is aware of your plan to talk to him and you are certain that she has a safety plan.39 Remember choosing to support and help protect the victim does not negate providing pastoral care to the abuser - 18 -
Preventing Domestic Violence As Leaders in our Faith Communities, How Can We Prevent Domestic Violence?40 We all agree that domestic violence is wrong and that something should be done to address the issue. Unfortunately, domestic violence has become an accepted and sometimes expected behavior in our culture and even in communities of faith. We can prevent domestic violence. To begin, we need to examine the factors in our families, schools, workplaces, communities, policies and culture that influence attitudes and beliefs about women, men, violence, power and control. To talk about the way forward, let's think about where we've been. We can do this through the following story about a river: A woman on a bank of a river sees a person floating by. She helps him out. As soon as he is safely on shore, she sees another person floating by. She helps him out and sees more and more people floating by. She pulls them out and walks upstream to see what is causing people to fall into the river. She sees a hole in the bridge, and starts warning people to walk around the hole. She prevents some people from falling, but not all. Then, she fixes the hole in bridge and prevents everyone from falling. The moral of the story is that by moving upstream, we are able to identify the root cause of the problem and address it, rather than trying to rescue people after they've fallen. This is what primary prevention efforts for domestic violence aim to do--to identify the root causes of domestic violence and to eliminate them so that we can stem the dangerous tide of abuse in our homes, families and communities. This concept should be familiar to faith leaders as they are very often skilled at identifying the root causes of the beliefs we have and how those beliefs inform the choices we make. - 19 -
For the past 40 years many of us have been working to provide safe, effective, relevant and accessible services for victims of domestic violence and their children. In an effort to support this life saving work, local domestic violence service providers, professional allies and faith leaders have come together to proclaim that domestic violence is preventable, and have begun to work on addressing the root causes of domestic violence; they have been engaging in primary prevention work. Below we outline the differences between three different types of prevention work that many of us are engaged in: Types of Prevention
Primary: Prevents a problem before it occurs by addressing underlying causes. Secondary: Detects a problem in its earliest stages and keeps it from fully developing. Tertiary: Minimizes the impact of a problem that has already occurred.
Prevention vs. Intervention
Prevention/social change is a long-term process that requires change at various levels of the community to prevent domestic violence before it occurs. Intervention is an immediate action taken to reduce harm from violence that has already happened. Both are important for faith communities to take seriously as ways to protect families.
Prevention: preventing violence from initially occurring Reducing and eliminating conditions that support domestic violence Promoting conditions that inhibit domestic violence Promoting behaviors you want others to adopt
Intervention: addressing the effects of violence after the violence has occurred and preventing a reoccurrence of violence Recognizing domestic violence Responding to domestic violence Highlighting extent of the problem or where to receive services
Primary prevention seeks to reduce the overall likelihood that anyone will become a victim or a perpetrator by creating conditions that make violence less likely to ever occur. You can create conditions like this in your faith community by supporting healthy, equitable relationships and challenging norms, attitudes and beliefs that condone violence against women.
Prevention is NOT: A one-time program or event One skill-building session One protocol
Prevention IS: An on-going process, requiring leadership and commitment Integrated into community infrastructure
Primary prevention will require true social change Process of changing the attitudes and beliefs that lead to specific behaviors
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Ideas Are Culturally Shaped Thinking about culture and preventing domestic violence can be a bit overwhelming. It helps sometimes to break things down in terms of parts or areas we seek to change. Knowledge Attitudes Beliefs Behaviors While we are all responsible for our own thoughts and actions, our understanding of the world around us is greatly shaped by our culture or social environment. Knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors influence what color socks to wear just as they influence how and what we value. These knowledge, attitudes beliefs and behaviors are influenced by the messages we receive all around us ­ in our homes, schools, workplaces, communities, media, and through our policies and laws. Some of our knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors are deliberately taught to us through institutions, such as schools and churches. Some are transmitted through less formal means, such as the mass media, peers, and parents. Regardless of the means by which these ideas are transmitted, they represent learned beliefs and behaviors and, as such, can be unlearned. More importantly, we can teach and learn new ideas. The following thought exercise will help us to understand the power of culture in shaping our knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors. - 21 -
Hot Dogs for Breakfast: How Culture and the Social Ecology Shape Intimate Partner Domestic Violence41 Do you eat hot dogs for breakfast? A couple of folks (usually college-aged) may answer yes, but the majority of people do not eat hot dogs for breakfast. Very few people eat hot dogs for breakfast. Now, think about the similarities between hot dogs and other "culturally appropriate" breakfast foods. Do you and other people you know eat sausage for breakfast? Do you or people you know eat biscuits or bagels or toast for breakfast? What's the difference between a hot dog in a bun and sausage and biscuits for breakfast? Of course there are some differences like spices, toppings, type of meat used, etc. but ultimately, there is very little difference between hot dogs and other types of breakfast foods, yet, most of us would never even think of listing hot dogs as a breakfast food. Why do you think most people know that hot dogs are not appropriate for breakfast? Some reasons might include: my mother told me not to, hot dogs aren't on breakfast menus, they don't serve hot dogs for school breakfasts, advertisements, health classes, etc. Ultimately, there is no real reason you couldn't eat hot dogs for breakfast ­ nutritionally, it is no worse for you than, say, a sausage biscuit from your favorite fast food restaurant. But, we know that most people don't see hot dogs as breakfast food because, at some point while we were growing up, we learned that hot dogs are not breakfast food but sausage and biscuits are. In other words, we deem it appropriate to eat certain foods at certain times of the day, while deeming other times inappropriate. Even things as basic as food categories are learned and they are shaped by culture and society through messages from all around us, until they become a part of our own knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors. We then internalize these ideas and patterns of behaviors as if they are "natural," when in fact they have been socially created. - 22 -
How are knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors about violence shaped by our environment? These are learned and shaped by the messages we receive from our relationships with others, our faith communities, our school and work communities, and our larger society. Messages from various levels of the social ecology (illustrated below) shape our ideas about why violence occurs, if violence is appropriate, and whom it is acceptable to use violence against. These messages come from peers who support the use of violence, from communities that do not punish the use of violence, and from our society when it suggests that one group of people is lesser than another and that the use of violence toward that group is less reprehensible than the use of violence against other groups. The good news is that since violence is learned, it can be unlearned. But this will take time. If I asked you to start eating hot dogs for breakfast tomorrow, would you do it? So, even after you've seen that our ideas about hot dogs for breakfast are constructed and there are no reasons to NOT eat hot dogs for breakfast, most of us still don't want to do it. We've learned for most of our lives, from a variety of sources, that hot dogs are not a breakfast food, so if we want to change people's minds about hot dogs for breakfast, we'll need to find ways to send a new message, and we'll probably have to go beyond simply educating people about why they should eat hot dogs for breakfast. Hot Dogs for Breakfast Movement If we decided we wanted to start a "hot dogs for breakfast" movement, how would you do it? What efforts or initiatives would we use to change ideas about hot dogs? Some examples might include a media campaign (Hot dogs aren't just for ballgames anymore), a peer educator program (friends make friends hot dogs for breakfast), a school board mandate to ensure hot dogs are served for breakfast in schools, etc. All of these strategies operate on different levels of the social ecology. Social ecology is a term we use to illustrate how influences around us impact how we behave. An image of the social ecology is above. This image represents how our behavior is influenced by factors in our society, community, relationships and individual cognitive and genetic predispositions. Factors on each of these levels, such as policies, media, gender norms, how our caretakers treated each other and how our friends treat their girlfriend/boyfriend, influence our knowledge, attitudes and beliefs about domestic violence. - 23 -
Just like our ideas about hot dogs for breakfasts are culturally shaped, so are our ideas about violence. Just like our ideas about appropriate breakfast foods are given to us by messages at multiple levels of the social ecology so are our ideas about violence. And just like persuading people to eat hot dogs for breakfast, it will take more than just education to change knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors about the use of domestic violence. A risk factor for perpetrating domestic violence can be characteristics of an individual or conditions present in the environment that increase the likelihood that someone will be a batterer. risk factors that exist on different levels of the social ecology are listed below. A single risk factor does not necessarily directly predict perpetration of domestic violence, but the presence of multiple risk factors may increase the chance of perpetration. Some risk factors listed are more causal in nature (such as previously witnessing or experiencing violence), and some are more situational (such as depression or young age). Communities can work to change the causal factors while maintaining an awareness of the situational factors which can increase risk. Individual 42 Previously witnessing or experiencing violence Hostility towards another gender, ethnic, racial or socio-economic group Heavy drinking or drug use Depression Personality Disorders Low academic achievement Low income Young age Relationship Marital conflict Marital instability Male dominance in the family Economic stress Poor family functioning Community Weak community sanctions against domestic violence Weak community sanctions against sexual violence perpetrators General tolerance of sexual assault within the community Lack of institutional support from police and judicial system Poverty Low social capital - 24 -
Society Traditional gender norms Weak laws and policies related to gender equity Social norms supportive of violence High tolerance levels of crime and other forms of violence Societal norms that support male superiority and sexual entitlement A protective factor that protects against perpetrating domestic violence can also be characteristics of an individual or conditions present in the environment. Like risk factors, protective factors that exist on different levels of the social ecology and can decrease the likelihood that someone will perpetrate domestic violence. Again, a protective factor does not necessarily directly prevent perpetration of domestic violence, but the presence of multiple protective factors may decrease the chance of perpetration. Below are some protective factors43 that exist on different levels of the social ecology that may decrease the likelihood that someone will perpetrate domestic violence: Individual Personal belief in the positive value of, and commitment to, caring, equality, and social justice Presence of skills to experience healthy sexuality and engage in healthy relationships Willingness and ability to be active participants in a thriving community Relationship Parents, adult authority figures, and peers of diverse backgrounds model and teach positive interpersonal relationships across diverse populations Families and/or other important figures provide a caring, open, and encouraging environment that actively promotes positive development Peers, families, and intimate partners effectively identify and respond to unhealthy/problem Community Diverse people are engaged within their communities in activities promoting healthy relationships and healthy sexuality The principles and skills of healthy relationships and healthy sexuality are demonstrated across various institutions The presence of just/fair boundaries and expectations about healthy relationships Society Social norms strongly support the development and maintenance of healthy relationships Shared responsibility for developing and maintaining thriving communities Ensuring accountability and expectations of people to interact respectfully is a fundamental part of life - 25 -
Culture equitably values and relies on experiences and leadership from all members of society including persons belonging to any historically oppressed group that has experienced systemic restrictions on their rights. Primary prevention strategies should seek to operate on multiple levels of the social ecology simultaneously for maximum impact. Please see the resources listed in the Appendix or call NCCADV for a list of programming that might be relevant for your community. - 26 -
The Faith Community and Prevention What faith leaders can do to develop safe and healthy congregations: Require domestic violence education and training for all paid and volunteer staff Condemn and criticize all gender-based oppressions and family violence Condemn and criticize the misuse of certain scriptures to subjugate women and reinterpret texts to affirm equality of women and girls Address family violence, its opposition to the community's spiritual beliefs and long term impact on families and communities Include safe and healthy relationship education in all aspects of youth and adult spiritual formation Integrate anti-bullying education into children's spiritual formation Influence your regional and national leaders to become educated and take an active stand against domestic violence Model safe and healthy relationships How faith communities can become proactive: Get educated Ensure operational budgets include education and training funding for staff Get involved in and support local community programming Become an educated activist Break the silence and destroy the myths: talk with friends and families Develop or support programs/ministries that focus on empowering girls Develop or support programs/ministries that focus on redefining masculinity Maintain prevention and intervention materials at facilities Require your local congregations, regional and national institutions to become educated and take an active stand against domestic violence Work across faith traditions to require education in the schools Model safe and healthy relationships - 27 -
Clergy Acknowledgements and Commitments We acknowledge: Domestic violence exists in our faith communities among adults and teenagers Domestic violence is both a crime and a sin Many of our religious teachings have been misused to perpetuate abuse and control of women As faith leaders it is our responsibility to grow and develop safe and healthy families and congregations The mission of our community is based on love, non-violence, justice and healing and all of these values are the antithesis of domestic violence We commit to: Educate our congregation about domestic violence Educate our congregants about healthy relationships and promote these healthy relationships among adults and youth Bring clarity and truth to misinterpreted and/or misused texts Develop congregational policies to hold abusers in our congregations accountable Refer abusers to a local abuser treatment program and professional help (see resource page for a listing of programs) Personally model safe and healthy relationships Prioritize our communities resources to address domestic violence Encourage our colleagues to join us in the work to end domestic violence Creating safe places where survivors can share their experience Acknowledge the violation as a sin and crime - 28 -
Clergy Acknowledgements and Commitments (continued) We commit to: Stand compassionately with survivors to receive justice and healing Develop congregational policies that protect the vulnerable from harm Develop ongoing relationships with local domestic violence programs Keep local resources readily available Promote the importance of education and policy development that supports survivors and holds perpetrators accountable throughout the regional and national levels of our faith community We will work to prevent domestic violence by: Identifying, educating and involving male as allies in the movement to end violence against women Educating teens on the dynamics of healthy and safe relationships and imparting skills that support the cultivation of healthy relationships Educating parents and their children on ways to engage respectful and non-violent behaviors Mentoring young men and guiding them in developing healthy masculine identities Rejecting all relational tactics that are power over and control based
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Developed by: Dr. Rev. Aleese Moore-Orbih President of FrontLine Consultants, LLC P. O. Box 873 Durham, North Carolina 27701 Phone (919) 986-0125 [email protected]
Appendix A Recommended Readings Christian Resources Keeping the Faith, Rev. Dr. Marie Fortune Violence Against Women and Children: A Christian Theological Sourcebook, Rev. Dr. Marie Fortune and Carol Adams Healing the Hurting: Giving Hope and Help to Abused Women, Clark­Kroeger, C. and J. R. Beck, eds. Violence in the Family: A Workshop Curriculum for Clergy and Other Helpers, Rev. Marie Fortune, "Calling to Accountability: The Church's Response to Abusers, Rev. Marie Fortune and James Poling Pastoral Care for Survivors of Family Abuse, James Leehan Defiant Hope: Spirituality for Survivors of Family Abuse, James Leehan Domestic Violence: What Every Pastor Needs to Know, Rev. Al Miles Ending Violence in Teen Dating Relationships, Rev. Al Miles The Battered Wife: How Christians Confront Family Violence, Nason­Clark, Nancy The Powers That Be, Wink, Walter Troubling in My Soul, Townes, Emilie M., ed. Balm for Gilead: Pastoral advocacy for African American Families Experiencing Abuse, Rev. Toinette Eugene How Scripture can be used to hurt or heal, Catherine Kroeger God's Reconciling Love: A Pastor's Handbook on Domestic Violence, Rev. Nancy Murphy The Battered Wife, Nancy Nason- Clark - 30 -
Muslim Resources Change From Within: Diverse Perspectives on Domestic Violence in Muslim Communities, Edited by Maha B. Alkhateeb and Salma Elkadi Abugideiri (Peaceful Families Project) What Islam Says about Domestic Violence: A Guide for Helping Muslim Families, Zainab Alwani and Salma Abugideiri (Peaceful Families Project) Helping Victims of Domestic Abuse: A Guide for Imams and Community Leaders, Shahina Siddiqui (Peaceful Families Project) Marital Discord: Recapturing the Full Islamic Spirit of Human Dignity, Abdulhamid A. Abusulayman. Herndon (Peaceful Families Project) Jewish Resources A Journey Towards Freedom, Rabbi Lisa Enger (FaithTrust Institute) A Resource Guide for Rabbis On Domestic Violence, Jewish Women's Institute You are Not Alone: Inspiration for Domestic Violence Victims Based on Jewish Wisdom (FaithTrust Institute) Haggadah: A journey Toward Freedom, (FaithTrust Institute) - 31 -
Appendix B
County resources:
Additional Resources
Domestic violence and sexual assault programs: Stand alone sexual assault programs:
State resources:
North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence: North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault: North Carolina Council for Women: Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative:
National resources:
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence: National Coalition Against Sexual Assault: National Center for Victims of Crime: National Network to End Domestic Violence: National Resource on Domestic Violence: Family Violence Prevention Fund: A Call to Men: Battered Women's Justice Project: Commission to End Domestic Violence: Institute on DV in the African-American Community:
Faith-based resources: Faith Trust Institute: The Rave Project: Safe Havens: Jewish Women International: Peace and Safety in the Christian Home: Peaceful Families Project: Presbyterians Against Domestic Violence Network:
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Appendix C 10 Things Men Can Do to Prevent Domestic and Sexual Violence44 1. Acknowledge and understand how male dominance and aspects of unhealthy manhood are at the foundation of domestic and sexual violence. 2. Examine and challenge our individual beliefs and the role that we play in supporting men who are abusive. 3. Recognize and stop colluding with other men by getting out of our socially defined roles, and take a stance to prevent domestic and sexual violence. 4. Remember that our silence is affirming. When we choose not to speak out against domestic and sexual violence, we are supporting it. 5. Educate and re-educate our sons and other young men about our responsibility in preventing domestic and sexual violence. 6."Break out of the man box"- Challenge traditional images of manhood that stop us from actively taking a stand in domestic and sexual violence prevention. 7. Accept and own our responsibility that domestic and sexual violence will not end until men become part of the solution to end it. We must take an active role in creating a cultural and social shift that no longer tolerates violence and discrimination against women and girls. 8. Stop supporting the notion that domestic and sexual violence is due to mental illness, lack of anger management skills, chemical dependency, stress, etc... Domestic and sexual violence is rooted in male dominance and the socialization of men. 9. Take responsibility for creating appropriate and effective ways to educate and raise awareness about domestic and sexual violence prevention. 10. Create responsible and accountable men's initiatives in your community to support domestic and sexual violence prevention. Copyright © 2004, ACT Men Inc. All rights - 33 -
Appendix D References 1 Developed by Rev. Dr. Aleese Moore-Orbih, Frontline Consultants, LLC, Durham, NC. 2 Family Violence Prevention Fund, The Facts on Domestic Violence, Dating and Sexual Violence, accessed May 18, 2011,available at http:/ 3 Id. 4 Id. 5 Id. 6 Id. 7 Id. 8 North Carolina Injury and Violence Prevention, Intimate Partner Violence in North Carolina, 2008, accessed June 6, 2011, available 9 Id. 10Id. 11Violence Policy Center, When Men Murder Women: An Analysis of 2008 Homicide Data, last accessed May 31, 2011, available at 12North Carolina Council for Women, 2009-2010 County Statistics, last accessed May 25, 2011, available at . Undoubtedly, there are women, children and men who are impacted by domestic violence who do not access services from their local domestic violence service provider for numerous reasons to be discussed later on in the chapter. 13National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Costs of Intimate Partner Violence Against Women in the United States. Atlanta (GA): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 2003.Available at The data presented reflect the incidence of IPV and related health care service use in 1995; these data are the most appropriate, reliable data currently available about the health care costs associated with IPV. 14 (Lindhorst, T, Oxford, M., Gillmore, M.R. Longitudinal Effects of Domestic Violence on Employment and Welfare Outcomes, J Interprets Violence. 2007 July; 22(7): 812­828. doi: 10.1177/0886260507301477.see Tolman & Raphael, 2000, for a summary of available prevalence data) 15 Lindhorst, T, Oxford, M., Gillmore, M.R. Longitudinal Effects of Domestic Violence on Employment and Welfare Outcomes, J Interprets Violence. 2007 July; 22(7): 812­828. doi: 10.1177/0886260507301477Tjaden & Thoennes, 2000). 16 The National Center for Victims of Crime, Domestic Violence, last accessed May 15, 2011, available at 17 The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Intimate Partner Violence: Definitions , last accessed May 15, 2011, available at 18 Id. 19Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, What is Domestic Violence, last accessed June 1, 2011, available at 64/Default.aspx. 20 DC Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Commonly Used Terms in Cases Involving Domestic Violence, last accessed July 6, 2011, available at http: 21 The National Coalition for Victims of Crime, Stalking ,last accessed July 11, 2011, available at 22 Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs, FAQs about the Wheels, last accessed June 25, 2011, available at - 34 -
23 Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998,p. 1.6 - 1.7 24 Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 - 5 25 Michigan Judicial Institute, Domestic Violence Benchbook, 1998, p. 1 - 8 26 Commonwealth Fund, Health Concerns Across a Woman's Lifespan: the Commonwealth Fund 1998 Survey of Women's Health, 1999. 27 Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1997 28 American Psychological Association, Violence and the Family, 1996 29 United States Department of Justice, National Crime Victim Survey,1995 30 Susan G.S. McGee, 15 Things that a Battered Woman Needs, 2004 31 FaithTrust Institute, Responding to Domestic Violence: Guidelines for Pastors, Rabbis, Imams, Priests and other Religious Leaders, last accessed July 11, 2011, available at 32 Id. 33 Susan G.S. McGee, 15 Things that a Battered Woman Needs, 2004 34 Id. 35 FaithTrust Institute, Responding to Domestic Violence: Guidelines for Pastors, Rabbis, Imams, Priests and other Religious Leaders, last accessed July 11, 2011, available at 36 Id. 37 Developed by Rev. Dr. Marie Fortune, FaithTrust Institute. 38 Id. 39 Id. 40 The following section is based, in part, upon materials from the National DELTA Core Curriculum, developed by the DELTA Collaborative. 41 *Developed by Debby Zelli, KS Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence, 2005. 42 The World Health Organization, The World Health Report, The world health report 2002 - Reducing Risks, Promoting Healthy Life, last accessed July 10, 2011, available at 43 Brad Perry, MA. Prevention Coordinator, Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance. 44 A Call to Men, 10 Things Men can do to Prevent Domestic and Sexual Violence, last accessed May 16, 2011, available at - 35 -

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