Religion & Domestic Violence: Information and Resources - Key Issue: Batterer Accountability

When faith communities and secular programs take steps to examine issues of batterer accountability in addition to those of victim safety and empowerment, they are better able to create a response that meets the needs of individuals and their communities.

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Religion & Domestic Violence: Information and Resources - Key Issue: Batterer Accountability by The National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (2007)

An awareness of the dynamics of domestic violence and efforts to hold batterers accountable for their behavior have enabled many faith communities to create supportive and safe environments for victims and survivors. Many faith communities are recognizing the need for effective interventions that support victims' and survivors' indvidual choices and promote their safety. When faith communities and secular programs take steps to better examine issues of batterer accountability in addition to those of victim safety and empowerment, they are better able to create a response that meets the needs of individuals and their communities.

Excerpt:Batterers seek to control not only their victims, but also to manipulate those around them as well. They may be respected members of their community who portray themselves as pleasant and charming individuals. They are often adept at making excuses and also shifting the blame from themselves to the victim. Family, friends and other community members a re often swayed by the battere r's ability to shirk responsibility and make seemingly valid excuses for abusive and controlling behavior. Victims are often inappropriately advised to change their behavior in order to prevent an abusers' 'outbursts.' Understanding the role of power and control within an abusive relationship is crucial to recognizing the potential danger of expecting victims to avoid abusive behavior by being more tolerant and accommodating."

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