Department of Defense observes Domestic Violence Awareness Month
October marks the Department of Defense’s 2021 Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The purpose of the campaign is to bring awareness to the military community’s responsibility to support victims, respond to abuse, and focus on prevention efforts this month and throughout the year.
The 2021 campaign theme, “United to End Domestic Abuse,” is a continuation of the 2020 theme, as it is enduring, strategic, and speaks to a broader audience, listing specific responsibilities for leaders and other members of the military community. It also provides resources and lists actions everyone can take to better support victims.
The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic has had an impact on domestic abuse cases. It created conditions of isolation and dependency that increased the opportunity for abusive and coercive control, including cyber monitoring, which can make it more difficult for isolated victims to find resources.
The DOD and the Family Advocacy Program focused this year’s campaign on supporting victims with an understanding of the wide range of circumstances they may experience because of the pandemic. The campaign also informs service providers, commanders and other leaders about how they can assist victims, and reminds victims that help is always available.
“As a military community, we must unite to protect our own,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy Patricia “Patty” Montes Barron. “The Family Advocacy Program is here to support victims in whatever capacity they need and want. However, we must all be ready to do our part when we hear, see or think someone is being abused. This campaign provides practical actions each member of the military community can take to support victims, keep them safe and help end abuse.”
Join the military community in the 2021 Domestic Violence Awareness Month campaign to learn more about what you can do to help end to domestic abuse. Be part of the military community’s solution. Respect, support and defend victims of domestic abuse.
The Family Advocacy Program is committed to supporting service members and their families impacted by domestic abuse through victim advocacy and crisis intervention. If you are concerned about your safety or the safety of someone else and need immediate support, you can reach out to the FAP staff on your installation or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
Victim advocates play a key role in intervening and protecting victims of domestic abuse by offering critical information and referrals, safety planning, and accompaniment and support.
About Military Community and Family Policy
Military Community and Family Policy is directly responsible for establishing and overseeing quality of life policies and programs that help our service members, their families and survivors be well and mission-ready. Military OneSource is the gateway to programs and services that support the everyday needs of the 5.2 million service members and immediate family members of the military community. These DOD services can be accessed 24/7/365 around the world.
Military OneSource: www.militaryonesource.mil
The National Domestic Violence Hotline: www.thehotline.org
Victims have two reporting options:
Unrestricted: those who want to pursue an official investigation report through the service member’s command, FAP or local law enforcement.
Restricted: those who do not want an official investigation but do want victim advocacy services, medical care and/or counseling should make a restricted report to a FAP victim advocate, clinician or supervisor, or a military health care provider.
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