Please report all child abuse and neglect
by calling 1-800-800-5556

Domestic violence is child abuse 

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  Very often, domestic violence is treated as an adult issue and we fail to consider the implications for the children involved.  The connection between domestic violence and child abuse is significant and well documented.  We know that each year, an estimated 3.3 million children are exposed to violence by family members and that children are present in 40-55% of home where police intervene in domestic violence calls.  Children growing up in violent environments suffer long term emotional and psychological effects.  Children raised in violent homes are:

ð  6 times more likely to commit suicide

ð  26 times more likely to commit sexual assault

ð  57 times more likely to abuse drugs

ð  74 times more likely to commit other crimes against persons


The risk to children is far greater, however, that just the damage from witnessing the violence.  Research suggests that 50-70% of men who abuse their partners also abuse their children and that in homes where domestic violence is occurring children are 1500% more likely to be abused. 

In the State of Indiana domestic violence is a Felony offense if committed in the physical presence of a child less than sixteen years of age, knowing that the child was present and might be able to see or hear the offense.  Domestic violence is child abuse and we must all make a report if we suspect domestic violence is occurring in a child’s home. If you have reason to believe a child is at risk, call the Department of Child Services or your local police department.  The Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS) in Indiana operates a 24-hour, 7-day a week hotline: 1 (800) 800-5556.

Learn more at the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Indiana Department of Child Services.

Need help in St. Joseph County?  The YWCA of North Central Indiana provides support to victims of domestic violence and operates at 24 hour crisis line - 866.YES.YWCA.  The Family Justice Center of St. Joseph County provides services for a  range of issues-safety, legal, employment, education and much more-with just a single stop.

We all play a role in preventing child abuse.

I pledge that if I am
concerned about a child I
will call 1-800-800-5556.

If I am overwhelmed,
stressed, scared and angry,
I will not take those
feelings out on my
child and can call
1-800-Children for help.


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