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How can you offer support to a victim of domestic violence?

Domestic violence is dangerous, but an often-silent issue that affects many families in Michigan. Because you may not recognize the signs of abuse right away, you may not even know that there are victims around you. Once you learn to identify the red flags that indicate that someone you care about may be experiencing abuse, it is imperative that you jump right into action to provide support, encouragement and protection. 

According to, approaching the topic of your concern about your family member should be done carefully and in an appropriate moment. If you can get your loved one to start talking, listen intently to what is being said and offer to help in very specific ways. For example, you can help him or her to form a safety plan that is coordinated down to each of the minute details to distance themselves from the perpetrator of the abuse. 

Your role in helping them formulate a thorough and strategic safety plan may be critical to their safety and well-being. Statistics show that people who find a way to escape their abuser and eventually leave, are at an alarming 75 percent higher chance of being killed by their abuser. As such, as soon as you can notify authorities, contact them immediately. In these types of difficult situations, timing is everything in making sure that you are able to assist the victim without putting them, as well as yourself, in further danger.  

The information in this article is intended for educational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice.  

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