Tracy Darling- DeMarcus
Prevention Program Manager
Tuesday, December 1st is recognized globally as World AIDS Day. You may be wondering, what is the connection between World AIDS Day and the violence prevention work of the WCA? HIV-positive women in the United States experience intimate partner violence (IPV) at rates that are higher than the general population. Across a number of studies, the rate of IPV among HIV-positive women (55%) was double the national rate. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recognizes the connection between these seemingly separate public health crises, which allows them to develop strategies aimed both at preventing intimate partner violence and new HIV infections (CDC 2014).
Preventing violence requires us to be intersectional and holistic with our approaches. Dating violence, sexual violence, bullying, suicide and other types of violence are connected, and share risk and protective factors. For example, weak health, educational, economic, and social policies/laws is a risk factor for sexual violence, intimate partner violence, suicide, and child abuse/neglect. But community support and connectedness is a protective factor against these same types of violence. Meaning that if we work to strengthen policies and laws as well as build community support and connectedness, we can impact all of these types of violence.
It is essential to our prevention efforts that we build relationships and work collaboratively with other providers in our community. And while we have strong partnerships with a number of other violence prevention programs, we also work closely with partners in public health, suicide prevention, mental health services, education and many more. By working together, we can make the vision of the WCA a reality in our community.
For more information about shared risk and protective factors, visit https://vetoviolence.cdc.gov/apps/connecting-the-dots/node/5.