knowledge is power - so be informed - stay safe.
Domestic abuse affects all of us!
If you are a victim of Domestic Abuse, please contact the Cheyney Police Department for advice, help and support. Our staff is trained to help you file PFA papers and help you in this situation. Even if you just need to talk, call our police department and speak to one of us. Domestic Violence is very serious and help is there just for the asking!
Domestic abuse is at epidemic proportions.
- Every day four women are murdered by boyfriends or husbands.
- Every nine seconds in the United States a woman is assaulted and beaten.
- Domestic violence is the number one cause of emergency room visits by women.
- In homes where domestic violence occurs, children are abused at a rate 1,500 percent higher than the national average.
- Women are most likely to be killed when attempting to leave the abuser. In fact, they're at a 75 percent higher risk than those who stay.
- A child's exposure to the father abusing the mother is the strongest risk factor for transmitting violent behavior from one generation to the next.
What is Dating Abuse?
Dating abuse is a pattern of violence, threats and/or manipulation used to coerce and control one's partner in a dating relationship. Dating abuse can take many forms.
Here are some examples:
EMOTIONAL ABUSE: Yelling, name-calling (especially sexual names), verbal harassment humiliating you in public or private, accusing you of dating others or flirting with others, blaming you for his/her own problems.
PHYSICAL ABUSE: Punching, choking, hair-pulling, slapping, shoving, bending or twisting your fingers, arm twisting, hitting you head against the wall, pushing you into/pulling you out of a car.
SEXUAL ABUSE: Rape, unwanted touching or kissing, forclng you into unwanted sex acts, wanting sex after hitting, refusing to use birth control/protectlon.
FINANCIAL ABUSE: Stealing your money, using your ATM card or credit card without permission, deliberately breaking or damaging your possessions.
To figure out if you are a victim of dating abuse, ask yourself these questions. Does the person I am dating...
- Act jealous or possessive?
- Insist on making all the decisions?
- Treat me with disrespect (insult me, call me names, order me around)?
- Blame me (or others) for his/her feelings or actions
- Pressure me for sex?
- Use physical force (hit me, restrain me, throw things) to get his/her way?
- Refuse to accept that I want to break up?
- Beg for another chance, especially after an outburst?
- Blame drugs or alcohol for his/her violence?
Are You Afraid? What If You Want Out?
- Talk to an adult NOW about staying safe and getting help. The more isolated you are from friends and family, the more control the abuser has over you.
- There are people in your school, community and family who can help you.
- You can also call the Domestic Violence Center of Chester County.
Toll-free 24-hour hotline number is 1-888-711-6270.
- Services are free and confidential.The staff is here to help you. They will listen and provide you with information and support.
- They can also refer you to other appropriate professionals who can help you if you need services not available at their agency.
If you or anyone else is in
immediate physical danger
CALL Cheyney Police at 610-399-2405
Deciding whether to go out...
- Know about the person who asked you out before you say "yes."
- If your friends express concern about you going out with this person, take their warnings seriously.
- If you have any concerns about going out with the person, DON'T GO.
If you decide to go...
- Stay with or near other people: go to public places, double-date, or hang out with a group
- Avoid being in an isolated area.
- Be able to leave on your own: know where there are telephones and exits; have money with you in case you need to use the telephone or call a cab.
If you want to break up with someone who has been abusing you...
- End the relationship over the telephone, so the abuser can't hurt you.
- If you must see your former partner, do it in a public place.
- If you are alone at home, do not let the abuser in, no matter what he/she says.
- Take any threats of violence by an abuse seriously. Don't laugh them off as "impossible" or a "sign of love". Abusers have no limits to what they will do, regardless of the consequences.
Key Points To Remember
- ANYONE can be a victim of dating violence. Victims (and abusers) come from all age groups, races, classes and backgrounds.
- Abuse gets worse over time. It may begin with verbal abuse and escalate to physical or sexual assault or other violence.
- YOU cannot change the abuser. For any change to take place, the abuser must take responsibility for his/her behavior.
What is relationship violence?
Relationship violence is a term that encompasses domestic violence, dating violence, and intimate partner violence. It involves a pattern of behavior in which someone tries to control and exert power over a current or former partner. It can include emotional abuse, physical abuse, and sexual abuse. Some common forms of relationship violence include:
1. Telling you that no one else would want you.
2. Being jealous of time you spend with others.
3. Reading your mail, email, and texts.
4. Hitting, shoving, and other forms of physical abuse.
5. Coercing and forcing sexual activity.
How common is relationship violence?
Relationship violence is extremely common. Although much of the focus is on women who experience violence from men, as the majority of people who are abused are women, men can also experience relationship violence and women can be perpetrators.
It is important to note that we still do not understand much about men experiencing domestic violence. Social norms emphasize both that men are supposed to be "strong" - and therefore cannot be abused - and that women are supposed to be "weak" - and therefore cannot abuse. There is growing evidence that the number of men experiencing relationship violence is far higher than ever believed.
What if I am in a violent relationship?
Many people who are experiencing relationship violence have been isolated from others by their abuser. You may begin to believe that you deserve the abuse or that the situation is hopeless. This is perfectly normal and natural, but the abuse is NOT your fault. You may recognize some of the behaviors below; these are done in an effort to gain power and control over your life. (Please note that the power and control wheel assumes a "traditional" heterosexual female being abused, but the same actions apply regardless of the sex or gender of the abuser and the abused.)
If you are experiencing relationship violence:
1. You are not alone. One of the key things an abuser tries to do is isolate you. You are not alone and can seek help from many sources.
2. Finding social support is vital. If you are not comfortable speaking to a friend/family member, or to anyone face to face, you can call the Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County at 610-565-4590 or visit their website at http://dapdc.org/
or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
3. Create a safety plan. You can work with an advocate (such as someone from the Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County), a friend/family member, or on your own to create a safety plan. The National Domestic Violence Hotline has an excellent resource for safety planning.
4. Remember that you know your relationship best; do not allow others to convince you to go against your instincts about what is safest for you.
1. The Cheyney Police Department at 610-399-2405
2. The Domestic Abuse Project of Delaware County at 610-565-4590
3. The Chester County Domestic Violence Center at 610-431-1430
Volunteers or staff from both the Chester County and Delaware County Domestic Violence Centers can help you with understanding Protection From Abuse Orders if you would like to explore that possibility, as well as in creating a safety plan.
What happens next?
What if someone I know is in a violent relationship?
The statistics on the number of people who experience relationship violence are high, especially on college campuses. Odds are that you will know someone during your college career that has experienced relationship violence. That person may ask you for advice or social support. This can be overwhelming, but being supportive often comes down to simply listening to your friend. Here are some tips for supporting someone who has experienced relationship violence.
3. Trust your friend's instincts and understanding of the relationship. It is not always safe to leave a relationship; provide any support the person asks for, but do not insist the person leave the relationship.
Stalking information and resources
What is Stalking?
Stalking is a crime, even though people sometimes describe it as a joke or just "courting." According to Pennsylvania law, stalking is "engaging in a course of conduct or repeatedly committing acts toward another person, including following the person without proper authority, under circumstances which demonstrate either of the following: an intent to place the person in reasonable fear of bodily injury, or an intent to cause substantial emotional distress to the person." Basically, stalking is a pattern of behavior by someone else that leads you to believe you are in danger or causes you a great deal of emotional distress.
Stalking is not just one type of behavior. It includes a wide range of behaviors that take place both online and in person. Some stalking behaviors include:
1. Repeated phone calls or hang-ups
2. Unwanted text messages or emails
3. Unwanted gifts
4. Using technology, like Facebook or cell phones, to keep track of you
5. Threats to friends and family
6. Showing up where you are
7. Lying about you to other people
With the increase in technology, we are seeing more and more cases of online stalking, also known as cyber stalking.
How common is stalking?
Stalking is quite common, with the number of cases increasing dramatically, especially among young adults.
What if I am being stalked?
Many people who are being stalked feel confusion, guilt, and responsibility and try to handle the stalker on their own. This is perfectly normal and natural, but the stalking is NOT your fault. Please seek assistance in stopping the stalker.
If you are being stalked:
- Do not try to reason with the stalker. Firmly and clearly tell the stalker that his or her attention is unwanted and leave it at that.
- Document all instances in which the stalker contacts you, including gifts left for you, text messages, or Facebook messages. Do not delete any text messages, Facebook messages, voicemails, or other electronic messages. Do not, though, respond to the messages.
- Change your routine behaviors (e.g., take a different route home or eat at a different time).
- Make sure your online accounts, such as Facebook, are set to private and do not "check in" to any location, as this can tell the stalker where you are.
- Please consider seeking assistance from University officials and the Cheyney Police Department.
a. If the stalker is a student, take any documentation (copies of emails, messages saved on your phone, etc) to the Office of Student Affairs.
b. If you would like to block the stalker's email address, speak to someone in IT.
An anonymous report should be made to Cheyney Police and to the University Title IX Coordinator. Anonymous reports of sexual assault, relationship violence, and stalking to the Title IX Coordinator must include your name. Your name is privileged information; the Title IX Coordinator will follow up with you to make sure you are aware of your rights, but will not conduct any investigations if you request that the information go no further.
What happens next?
What if someone I know is being stalked?
8. Understand that you may be required by Title IX or Clery to report what you have learned to the Title IX Coordinator. Be honest with your friend about this. Recognize any discomfort you feel about having to report. Your discomfort is completely valid; share it with the person who has talked with you as well.
Where can I go to learn more?
Stop stalking image from http://fayetteadvocate.com/archives/6876/2013/01/17/january-is-stalking-awareness-month/
Stalking stats image from http://calvcp.blogspot.com/2013/01/bringing-awareness-to-prevalence-and.aspx
For THE Kids....
Things You Can Do To Stay Safe
either between your parents or your brothers and sisters?
- Your full name
- Your complete address including city, state and zip code
- Your entire phone number with area code
- What situations will lead you to call 911. If domestic violence is occurring in your house, you might want to make up a code word with the abused parent or sibling. If he/she uses that word then you will call 911
- Dialing 911 can reach police, the fire department or ambulance
- Try to remain calm
- When the 911 operator answers, state the problem briefly and give your full name and address
- Do not hang up the phone until the operator says to