*If you or someone you know is in desperate need of help, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or TTY 1-800-787-3224.
Every 15 seconds domestic violence takes place in the United States.
In 2021, 112 victims lost their lives to domestic violence in Pennsylvania. Two of those victims lived in Cambria County.
In 2020, Cambria County had four victims and Somerset County had one victim and in 2019 Somerset County had one victim.
Common indicators of abuse include:
- Name calling or demeaning comments
- Someone that seems too good to be true early in a relationship; the relationship may advance very quickly
- Frequent phone calls or texts
- Threatens to harm or kill you, your pet(s), or family members
- Blames you for the abusive behavior; does not take responsibility for actions
- Prevents you from spending time with family or friends and from enjoying hobbies and other activities
- Damages your credit by exceeding limits, purposely not paying bills, etc; may restrict your access to financial resources
Unfortunately, most Americans don’t know how real domestic violence is and just how many people are affected by it.
Since most domestic violence cases happen behind closed doors, there was a decision made to raise awareness and educate the public, which is why Domestic Violence Awareness Month was introduced in 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV).
Domestic violence in Pennsylvania:
- 1% of women and 30.4% of men experience intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking in their life
- In 2019, 112 domestic violence homicides were reported and 64% of these homicides were committed with a firearm
- In one day in 2020, 2,574 victims/survivors were served by Pennsylvania domestic violence programs; 198 requests for domestic violence services went unmet due to a lack of resources
The vast majority of domestic violence homicides in 2021 were done by gunshot – 71 to be exact. The other victims were murdered by:
- Stabbing – 20
- Beaten – 9
- Strangled – 6
- Other – 5
- Poisoned – 1
One demographic that is at higher risk for domestic violence is the pregnant population. According to The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV), about 20% of pregnant people experience violence during their pregnancy. The risks are even greater for Black pregnant people or those under 20 years old. Unintended pregnant people are also two to four times more likely to experience physical violence compared to those with planned pregnancies.
More 2021 Pennsylvania domestic violence statistics can be found on the PCADV’s report.
More than 1,600 people have died from domestic violence-related incidents in Pennsylvania in the last 10 years. Women, children, and men of all ages, races, sexual orientations, and socioeconomic groups are affected by domestic violence.
It’s important that victims of abuse get help as soon as they need it. If you see or hear abuse, call the police immediately.
Local domestic violence resources:
- Women’s Help Center Inc.
809 Napoleon Street
Johnstown, PA 15901
- Victim Services
638 Ferndale Avenue
Johnstown, PA 15905
Cambria County: 814-288-4961
Somerset County: 814-443-1555
- Dial 2-1-1 to get connected to resources