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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Learn more about domestic violence and how it's being affected by COVID-19.

Sep 30, 2020

Domestic violence does not discriminate. Anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender can be a victim–or perpetrator –of domestic violence. It can happen to people who are married, living together or who are dating. It affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels. 

Domestic violence includes behaviors that physically harm, arouse fear, prevent a partner from doing what they wish, or force them to behave in ways they do not want. It includes the use of physical and sexual violence, threats and intimidation, emotional abuse and economic deprivation. Many of these different forms of domestic violence/abuse can be occurring at any one time within the same intimate relationship.

On average, 24 people per-minute are victims of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States—more than 12 million women and men over the course of a year.

Domestic violence was already an epidemic before COVID-19, but the health crisis has caused a tremendous spike in incidents of abuse. Even as lockdown restrictions are lifted, the abuse will not simply end. It remains a critical time for survivors, and greater awareness, education, and bystander intervention are needed.

Here’s how COVID-19 could uniquely impact intimate partner violence survivors:

  • Abusive partners may withhold necessary items, such as hand sanitizer or disinfectants.
  • Abusive partners may share misinformation about the pandemic to control or frighten survivors, or to prevent them from seeking appropriate medical attention if they have symptoms.
  • Abusive partners may withhold insurance cards, threaten to cancel insurance, or prevent survivors from seeking medical attention if they need it.
  • Programs that serve survivors may be significantly impacted –- shelters may be full or may even stop intakes altogether. Survivors may also fear entering shelter because of being in close quarters with groups of people.
  • Survivors who are older or have chronic heart or lung conditions may be at increased risk in public places where they would typically get support, like shelters, counseling centers, or courthouses.
  • Travel restrictions may impact a survivor’s escape or safety plan – it may not be safe for them to use public transportation or to fly.
  • An abusive partner may feel more justified and escalate their isolation tactics.

If any of the above sound like they may be happening to you or someone you love, here are a few suggestions for survivors that may make this uncertain time feel a little bit safer:

  • Create a safety plan.
    A safety plan is a personalized, practical plan that includes ways to remain safe while in a relationship, planning to leave, or after you leave. Here at The Hotline, we safety plan with victims, friends, family members, and anyone who is concerned about their own safety or the safety of someone else.
  • Practice self-care.
    COVID-19 is causing uncertainty for many people, but getting through this time while experiencing abuse can feel really overwhelming. Taking time for your health and wellness can make a big difference in how you feel. To learn more about how to build in self-care while staying safe, you can learn more here.
  • Reach out for help.
    While people are encouraged to stay at home, you may feel isolated from your friends and family. Even if you are isolated, try to maintain social connections online or over the phone, if it is safe to do so, and try to stick to your daily routines as much as possible.

If you believe you have been a victim of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and/or stalking contact Security immediately to file a report. You may also contact a CNM Title IX Coordinator to create a report.

 Security’s Contact information:

Emergency Dispatch can be reached at
(505) 224-3001 or 911 from any CNM phone

Non-emergency Dispatch can be reached at (505) 224-3002

Title IX Coordinators’ Contact Information:

Christopher Cavazos                                            Juliane Ziter                                       
Dean of Students                                                  Executive Director of Human Resources
CNM Main Campus                                              CNM Main Campus
Student Services Center                                      Ted Montoya Building
Room 202B                                                           Room TM 104E
525 Buena Vista SE                                             525 Buena Vista SE
Albuquerque, NM 87106                                       Albuquerque, NM 87106
ccavazos@cnm.edu                                             JZiter@cnm.edu
505-224-4000 x51240                                          505-224-4000 x51294

Information provided by the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

Here are some more resources:
The National Domestic Violence HOTLINE: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) and TTY 1-800-787-3224
Albuquerque Family Advocacy Center: 505-243-2333
Domestic Violence Resource Center (DVRC): 505-248-3165 (24 hour line)
Rape Crisis Center of Central New Mexico: 505-266-7711 (24/7 Hotline)
NM Coalition Against Domestic Violence: 505-246-9240
For a complete list of Domestic Violence resources, please visit the CNM Website.
Bystander Intervention Strategies