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Domestic Violence Awareness Month --- October 2005

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). During this month, CDC is encouraging men and women to help prevent intimate partner violence (IPV) by taking an active role in promoting healthy relationships. IPV is defined as physical, sexual, or psychological harm to a person by a current or former partner or spouse. This type of violence can occur among heterosexual or same-sex couples and does not require sexual intimacy.

IPV affects persons at all stages of life. Children who witness IPV are at greater risk for failure in school and developmental problems (1). Adolescents involved with an abusive partner report increased levels of substance use and antisocial behavior (2). IPV in adults can result in depression, broken bones, and heart or circulatory conditions (3).

In recognition of DVAM, CDC is launching a website about the Domestic Violence Prevention Enhancement and Leadership Through Alliances program and co-hosting an Internet seminar on working with men to prevent IPV. Additional information about IPV is available at


  1. Nelson HD, Nygren P, McInerney Y, Klein J, US Preventive Services Task Force. Screening women and elderly adults for family and intimate partner violence: a review of the evidence for the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Ann Intern Med 2004;140:387--96.
  2. Roberts TA, Klein JD, Fisher S. Longitudinal effect of intimate partner abuse on high-risk behavior among adolescents. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 2003;157:875--81.
  3. Tjaden P, Thoennes N. Extent, nature, and consequences of intimate partner violence: findings from the National Violence Against Women Survey. Washington, DC: US Department of Justice; 2000. Publication no. NCJ-181867. Available at

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