Domestic violence is at its highest rate in a decade: It’s time to #BreakTheSilence
(JOINT NEWS RELEASE)
November is Family Violence Prevention Month and this year it is increasingly important that Calgarians learn about the growing problem of domestic violence in our city.
Domestic violence has been on the rise for the last few years in Calgary, and this year is expected to have one of largest increases yet. Each month this year, domestic violence rates have been higher than average and so far in 2016, police have responded to 2,796 domestic violence calls – 36 per cent more calls than the five-year average for this time of year.
Based on these statistics, Calgary is on-track to have the highest domestic violence rate in our city since 2004.
More importantly though, these statistics represent 2,743 people who have experienced domestic violence so far this year. This is a number that all Calgarians need to help change.
The Calgary Domestic Violence Collective, in partnership with the Government of Alberta, is hoping to change this trend and is launching Family Violence Prevention Month by hosting a conference for professionals who work with families experiencing violence. Professionals ranging from justice officials, police officers, counsellors and social workers will be meeting to discuss the best ways to address domestic and sexual violence.
Calgarians are also encouraged to be part of the solution to family violence by taking time this November to do their part to break the silence and stand against family violence. There are several things that people can do to help:
- Talk to your children about what kinds of behaviours are healthy in a relationship and which ones are not.
- Donate to organizations that work to support families affected by domestic and sexual violence.
- Volunteer with organizations that work to support families affected by domestic and sexual violence.
- Spread the word about domestic and sexual violence on social media, using the hashtag #breakthesilenceyyc.
- If you know someone who is in an unhealthy relationship, learn how you can support them.
The Calgary Domestic Violence Collective also encourages anyone experiencing domestic or sexual violence to reach out for help.
If you are in immediate danger, Call 9-1-1. If you are believe you are experiencing domestic abuse, call the 24-hour Family Violence Helpline at 403-234-SAFE (7233). If you have been sexually abused in an intimate relationship call the 24-hour Sexual Violence Support and Information Hotline at 403-237-5888. To report domestic abuse or violence call the Calgary Police Service Non-Emergency Line at 403-266-1234.