Every day at least 3 women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends in the U.S.  October is set aside to help bring awareness to the issue – across the country domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women aged 15-44. In Arizona last year, 108 individuals lost their lives to domestic violence; so far this year there have been 68 documented domestic violence related deaths.  It doesn’t matter what race, age, sexual orientation, religion, gender or socioeconomic background you are, you can be a victim.  Domestic violence happens among married couples, couples living together and those who are dating.   Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological.  

Survivors can find help from a number of resources through ADHS, the Governor’s Office for Children, Youth and Families and the Department of Economic Security.  At ADHS we have the Rural Safe Home Network and the Sexual Assault Prevention Education Program. The Rural Safe Home Network funds 7 shelters in rural communities that provide temporary emergency overnight accommodations and support services to women and children impacted by domestic violence.  Last year alone, these 7 shelters answered 9,430 crisis calls and provided 23,564 emergency beds to women, children and men.  These programs and project activities support the Department’s Strategic Map Health Outcome to Promote and Protect Public Health and Safety.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, there is help, call the National Domestic Violence Crisis line at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) to find a shelter near you. The Arizona Coalition Against Domestic Violence has a legal hot-line that provides information, referrals, and explanations about domestic violence and legal issues, 1-800-782-6400.