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Is domestic violence a big problem in Georgia?

The issue of domestic violence seems to be brought up more and more with each passing year. This may be because of high profile cases in the news, or recognition finally coming to problem that has, for far too long, been swept under the rug. Some people may wonder, however, how big a problem domestic violence is in a state such as Georgia.

According to statistics compiled by the Georgia Commission on Family Violence (GCFV), a quarter of women in the U.S. will experience domestic violence at some point in their lives. That's 25 percent. While there is no monopoly on domestic violence by one gender, the statistics show that around 85 percent of domestic violence incidents are committed by men against women. It should also be noted that same sex partners also experience domestic violence at the same rates as heterosexual women. What's more, it doesn't just affect spouses or partners, as 15.5 million children witness domestic violence over the course of a year.

Closer to home, over 1,400 people were killed in domestic violence incidents over the period from 2003 to the end of 2014, according to the GCFV. Further, Georgia has the 17th highest rate of men killing women in the country, and in a fatality review project commissioned be GCFV, 29 percent of domestic violence killings were witnessed by children in Georgia. Police responded to over 61,000 domestic violence calls in the state during 2013.

People who have experienced domestic violence don't need these statistics to understand the serious ramifications and feelings of helplessness it causes. Along with physical injuries, domestic violence produces continuous emotional stress as victims and children wonder when the next incident will occur. It is important to remember that help is available whether through state or private shelter and assistance programs, or a private attorney. Victims of domestic violence have options to aid them in ending their abuse and gaining legal protection.

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