February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. This annual campaign is dedicated to raising awareness of teen dating violence and helping youth establish healthy relationships.
Teen Dating Violence is an issue that impacts everyone—not just teens—but their parents, teachers, friends, and communities as well. Together, we can join and make it a national effort to raise awareness and promote safe, healthy relationships.
Teen Dating Violence is a type of intimate partner violence between two individuals in a close relationship. Unhealthy relationships can start early and last a lifetime. Behaviors such as physical violence, sexual violence, psychological aggression, and stalking are abusive and may develop into serious forms of violence.
Unfortunately, only a small percentage of teens who experience dating violence reach out to parents, law enforcement, teachers, health care practitioners, or other adults who can help. However, education, awareness, and early intervention can help our youth break the cycle of dating violence.
Everyone can make a difference by reaching out to young people in simple ways. It is important to interact with our teens to help teach them the skills needed to create and maintain healthy relationships:
• Talk about respect and boundaries
• Know how to spot warning signs and behaviors of dating violence
Some examples of red flags:
If you are afraid of your partner
If your partner threatens or controls you (ie: controls your money, isolates you from family and friends)
If your partner physically or emotionally abuses you
If your partner sexually abuses you
• Know how to stay safe on social media; be aware that dating violence can also occur online
• Safety Planning – being prepared in case of a future crisis, consider options and make appropriate safe decisions about your next steps to increase safety and security
• Knowing to call Police (911) if fearful of their safety
• Know their worth – learn about self-empowerment
Every young person is deserving of a healthy, loving relationship.
For more information, refer to the following links:
Every member of the community should be on the lookout for a potentially bad situation.
We all have a role to play in Safety and Crime Prevention. TakeAction
If you see something– say something!
MAKE THE RIGHT CALL
Emergency Dial: 911
Non-emergency Police Dial: 204-986-6222
Report a Crime Online: winnipeg.ca/police