Preventing Intimate Partner Violence

Key points

  • Intimate partner violence is a serious problem that has lasting and harmful effects on individuals, families, and communities.
  • CDC’s goal is to stop intimate partner violence from happening in the first place.


Prevention efforts should reduce the occurrence of intimate partner violence by promoting healthy, respectful relationships. Healthy relationships can be promoted by addressing risk and protective factors at the individual, relationship, community, and societal levels.

CDC developed the Intimate Partner Violence Prevention Resource for Action to help states and communities take advantage of the best available evidence to prevent intimate partner violence.


Prevention strategies and their corresponding approaches are listed in the table below.

Strategy Approach
Teach safe and healthy relationship skills.
  • Social-emotional learning programs for youth.
  • Healthy relationship programs for couples.
Engage influential adults and peers.
  • Men and boys as allies in prevention.
  • Bystander empowerment and education.
  • Family-based programs.
Disrupt the developmental pathways toward partner violence.
  • Early childhood home visitation.
  • Preschool enrichment with family engagement.
  • Parenting skill and family relationship programs.
  • Treatment for at-risk children, youth and families.
Create protective environments.
  • Improve school climate and safety.
  • Improve organizational policies and workplace climate.
  • Modify the physical and social environments of neighborhoods.
Strengthen economic supports for families.
  • Strengthen household financial security.
  • Strengthen work-family supports.
Support survivors to increase safety and lessen harms.
  • Victim-centered services.
  • Housing programs.
  • First responder and civil legal protections.
  • Patient-centered approaches.
  • Treatment and support for survivors of intimate partner violence, including teen dating violence.