Family Violence Prevention Month
November is Family Violence Prevention Month. Family violence is any form of abuse or neglect that a child or adult experiences from a family member, or from someone with whom they have an intimate relationship. It is an abuse of power by one person to hurt and control someone who trusts and depends on them. Common forms of family violence include physical, sexual, emotional, or financial abuse and neglect.
Access aditional resources here.
Physical abuse — physical injury or death of a family member or intimate partner caused when someone:
- pushes, shoves, hits, slaps, or kicks
- pinches or punches
- strangles or chokes
- stabs or cuts
- throws objects
- holds someone down for another person to assault
- locks someone in a room or ties them down
Sexual abuse — forced sexual activity on a family member or intimate partner, when someone:
- touches another in a sexual way without consent
- has any sexual activity without consent
- continues sexual activity when asked to stop
- forces another to commit unsafe or humiliating sexual acts
Sexual abuse can also happen in intimate partner relationships. Even if you are married or engaged, your partner cannot force you to have sex.
Children under the age of 16 cannot give informed consent, so any sexual contact between an adult and a child is a crime. Children under the age of 18 cannot legally give consent to sexual activity that exploits them.
Emotional or psycho-social abuse — words / actions to control or frighten a family member or intimate partner, or destroy their self-respect, when someone:
- makes threats
- intimidates or bullies
- puts down, insults, or calls a person names
- yells or criticizes all the time
- isolates a person from friends and family
- destroys belongings
- hurts pets
Financial abuse — control / misuse of a family member's or intimate partner's money or property, when someone:
- takes another person's money or property without permission
- prevents a person from going to work or otherwise obtaining money / other resources
- withholds or limits money
- pressures a person to sign documents
- forces a person to sell things or change a will
Neglect — not meeting the basic needs to provide care for a dependent family member or intimate partner, when someone:
- does not provide proper food, warm clothing, health care, medication, or appropriate hygiene
- does not protect another person from physical harm or provide proper supervision
- abandons another person
If you or someone you know needs help, please call the ACCESS Line at 1-888-536-3599.
- To find family violence supports or programs in your area, visit this Government of Canada website
- If you are concerned about a child being abused, please contact your local Child Welfare agency. Find your local agency here
- If you know an elder who needs support, visit this Government of Canada website