Domestic violence victims can access software app for help

The victims of domestic violence in California are almost always women. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports that one in three women will experience domestic violence by a spouse or other intimate partner within their lifetime. Experts across the country have developed a software app that women can use to identify the red flags and develop some knowledge on how to best exit from an abusive relationship.

Where a victim is represented by experienced family law counsel, that person should fully share the history and dynamics of the situation with her attorney. The legal system provides protections against domestic assault and harassment. An experienced attorney can connect the victim with various resources in the community and take action to engage the assistance of the law enforcement system.

The family law courts may issue protective injunctions and other restrictions. Where the violence rises to the level of criminality, law enforcement authorities must be called in for maximum protection. In addition, the software app, which is named myPlan, contains numerous educational functions and quizzes to accumulate data on the person's problem.

One of the first steps with the software includes an assessment of the person's relationship and a conclusion on whether it appears to be healthy or abusive. Issues of power and control may be identified in addition to physical danger points. The app, which may be downloaded to both Android and iOS devices, also looks at the phenomenon of "victim blaming."

With blaming, many victims of domestic violence are basically harassed into blaming themselves for the abuse or assaultive occurrence. Victims in California and elsewhere can turn to their local community resources for help in breaking the cycle of repeated abuse, whether it be physical or emotional. The individual needs only to find the courage to come forward and seek assistance.   

Source: statepress.com, "ASU professor helps make app to educate women on signs of domestic violence", Chase Budnieski, Nov. 15, 2017

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