Domestic violence in Carson City : Prevent instead of react
A look at domestic violence in Carson City:
Today: Resources available
If you believe you or someone you know may be in an abusive relationship here are the steps to take:
Listen without judgment
Don’t tell them what to do
Don’t ask how they got themselves into that situation
If you have question about what to say and how to help them safely plan to get out of the relationship call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.
Domestic violence statistics:
Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women — more than car accidents, muggings and rapes combined, nationally
Men are victims of nearly 3 million domestic assaults in the U.S.
Though, a majority of offenders are male, in 2014, men made up nearly 37 percent of domestic victims in Carson City — 144 men per 1,000 is a victim. Nearly a third of temporary protection orders issued are for male victims
There will be about 330 victims of domestic violence this year in Carson City, according to Universal Crime Reporting Statistics.
More than 60 percent of domestic incidents occur in the home nationally
Women ages 18-34 are at the greatest risk of being a domestic victim nationally
Only 25 percent of physical assaults against women are reported to the police annually, according to national statistics
In Carson City, the most common time of the day for a domestic call to occur is between 6-8 p.m.
In Carson City, the most common domestic violence relationship is cohabitation
In Carson City, 93 percent of the time, the weapon used in a domestic incident is hands, feet and fists
In Nevada, police officers follow mandatory arrest laws for domestic violence, meaning if they can determine a primary aggressor of the incident that is the person who gets arrested
Definition of domestic violence:
Domestic violence occurs when a person commits one of the following acts against or upon the person’s spouse or former spouse, any other person whom the person is related by blood or marriage, any other person with whom the person is or was actually residing, any person with whom the person has had or is having a dating relationship, any other person with whom the person has a child in common, the minor child of any of those persons, the person’s minor child or any person who has been appointed the custodian or legal guardian for the person’s minor child:
Compelling the other person by force or threat of force to perform an act from which the other person has the right to refrain or to refrain from an act which the other person has the right to perform
A sexual assault
A knowing, purposeful or reckless course of conduct intended to harass the other person
A false imprisonment
Unlawful entry to the other person’s residence, or forcible entry against the other person’s will if there is a reasonably foreseeable risk of harm to the other person from the entry.
Domestic Violence: NRS 33.018. acts which constitute domestic violence
If you or someone you know is dealing with a domestic violence situation call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or Carson City Advocates to End Domestic Violence at 775-883-7654.
End Domestic Violence. “If people don’t know that there are those other resources in town that they can go to. It’s easier to get help on this end than when you cross the line.”
One place for families to go is Partnership Carson City. On its website, Partnership offers a list of local places to go for local services from legal services to get out of a domestic relationship, to utilities payment help, to education services.
“Domestic violence is hard because our clients don’t want to talk about it even though we know it is happening,” said Omar Anaya, executive director for the United Latino Community. The ULC is a branch of Partnership Carson City who helps the Latino community and Anaya said the ULC sees a lot of domestic problems with its clients because of its cultural ideals.
He said in the Latino community, marriage is a forever bond, so it’s difficult for clients to get help with domestic violence because they are taught and pressured to stay in the marriage no matter what.
“Our clients want the information (on how to help themselves from domestic violence) but they don’t want to share,” Anaya said.
The ULC helps its client base by helping provide additional resources and referrals for services in Carson City. The ULC has an on-site counselor who helps victims get through the process of reporting and finding legal and financial help.
“Sometimes they just don’t know what to do to get out of that situation,” Anaya said. “So we say ‘here is the information you need’ and we can help. Whatever information they need we do our best to help and if we can’t we will find out where you can call for help.”
The Ron Wood Family Resource Center also is a beneficial referral service for struggling families.
The center offers a host of resources from parenting classes to after school programs to a free food bank for families. It also offers family counseling, help with housing and energy and resource referrals.
“We offer support services and referrals,” said Joyce Buckingham, executive director for the Ron Wood Center. “We are good at bringing together a family unit and find out what their needs are to help them.”
Buckingham said the services are good for domestic victims, because like the ULC, if the center isn’t able to provide the specific resources to help a family, it has the services to help find other resources in Carson City.
“Say you get sent to us first and if we don’t do it under our roof, we know who can,” Buckingham said. “Finding out what the family feels their needs are and working to get them back on track.”
She said the center is a good resource because it can treat and react to situations in an urgent manner.
“People in crisis need to be seen right then and we are timely to help immediately,” Buckingham said. “It is a safe zone and there is no judgment.”
However, not all domestic incidents end with the help of family resources. For victims dealing with long-term domestic abuse, they can turn to the Advocates to End Domestic Violence shelter for a place to try to get away from their abuser.
“What we usually see here are women who don’t have any options, their family isn’t available or together enough to help them or they have burnt that bridge, and they don’t have any financial resources so you don’t usually end up in a shelter if you have any other resources,” Lee said.
Domestic violence shelters didn’t start until the late 1970s, and they were a grassroots movement, often with victims staying in someone’s house. It wasn’t until 1985 the Advocates opened their permanent shelter here in Carson City.
“Our shelter is the backbone of our agency,” Lee said. “They realized with our crisis call line that if you didn’t have anywhere to go what good is it? You can chat with them on the phone and maybe make them feel better but if you don’t have a place to go, there isn’t a solution.”
Victims can stay up to five months at the Carson City shelter, and hold up to 51 people. Most shelters only allow people to stay for 30 days, but Lee believes a month isn’t enough time for someone to reconstruct their life.
Though the shelter is a good resource for victims to turn to, Lee said it’s a last resort to have a victim go into the shelter.
“Its tough to go into a shelter, it’s something that no matter how nice I make it and how accommodating we are, it still isn’t your home,” Lee said. “If I can keep her in her house, it saves her a lot of money, the disruption of the kids, everything. Shelter is tough because you have to live with other people.”
Besides a shelter, the Advocates offer a number of resources for victims, including support groups. They also offer classes such as how to better manage a budget and nutritional cooking classes.
For more information on Partnership Carson City visit http://www.pcccarson.org or call (775) 841-4730. For information on the United Latino Community call (775) 885-1055. For information on the Ron Wood Family Center visit http://www.ronwoodcenter.org or call (775) 884-2269. For more information on the Advocates to End Domestic Violence call (775) 883-7654.