Community Intervention With People Who Harm

If you know the victim, please talk with them before taking any of the following actions with an abuser in order to reduce the potential for retaliation. Discuss your plans so they can maximize safety; suggest that they call a hotline to conduct a safety plan.

  • The simple act of someone saying something and naming this behavior “abuse” is enough to get people thinking about how they treat the people around them.
  • Trust your instincts. If you see or hear something that makes you feel uncomfortable or that you think crosses the line, chances are it is a warning sign and should not be ignored.
  • Be involved but be respectful. Don’t get yourself in a dangerous situation and don’t try to “fix” other people’s relationships.
  • When talking with an abuser, let them know that you think the use of any violence in a relationship, including threats, is unacceptable and that there’s never a reason for it. Nothing their partner does makes it okay for them to hurt their partner.
  • Tell them that domestic violence, including stalking, is a crime and that their abuse can put them in jail.
  • Let them know that there is help in the community to end their abusive behavior. Contact one of the local domestic violence programs to find an approved, certified, batterer’s treatment program in the area.
  • If at an university, discuss your university’s policies on abuse, physical and sexual violence and harassment.
  • Display anti-violence posters and educational materials in your environments.