Domestic violence is a topic that is getting increasing coverage in recent years, and a high-profile domestic violence incident in Calgary has reignited the conversation in Alberta. People seem to have many questions about how to manage such situations. What should be done if experiencing domestic violence? Is there a good way to help a loved one, and what family law solutions exist to protect people trying to leave an abusive household? Experts in the province are weighing in on these questions to keep people safe.
In Calgary, Alberta, there were over 21,535 domestic conflict calls last year. About one-quarter of these calls involved domestic violence. The represents a 48% increase over the five-year average, prompting police to make statements on the issue.
One common misconception is that domestic violence is the same as spousal violence. In fact, abusive people can cause harm to other family members, such as children or cohabiting parents. Those who are leaving an abusive partner often have concerns about the safety of their children in the situation, which is why family law is such a critical consideration for many.
The first step in leaving an abusive marriage or relationship is to get to safety. The best way to do this, or to help another person to do it, is to find local services that help in these cases. This can include police-based victims services programs and shelters designed for those leaving abusive situations. Finding a lawyer to understand family law solutions after leaving an abusive spouse, or when trying to protect children from a dangerous situation, is also important.