Domestic Violence and Co-occurrence with Child Abuse and Neglect – Resolution

Domestic violence often occurs alongside child abuse and neglect, therefore its prevention is critical for child abuse prevention as well. Prevent Child Abuse America has taken a position on this issue.

A Resolution on Domestic Violence and Co-occurrence with Child Abuse and Neglect

Whereas, 30 to 60 percent of children from homes where domestic abuse is present are also victims of abuse themselves.1

Whereas, parents who are stressed and burdened by being victimized are also at increased risk of neglectful or abusive parenting.2

Whereas, witnessing domestic violence can cause serious harm to psychological, cognitive, social, behavioral and emotional development, including but not limited to fearfulness, sleeplessness, anxiety, withdrawal, depression, and aggression.3

Whereas, domestic violence constitutes the single, greatest precursor for child maltreatment fatalities.4

Therefore, be it resolved, that Prevent Child Abuse America supports:

Collaboration among child abuse and domestic violence prevention organizations to address and prevent both child abuse and domestic violence.

Designing and implementing public education campaigns about the co-occurrence and compound risk of domestic violence and child abuse and neglect.

Developing comprehensive, community-based prevention and intervention programs that seek to prevent family violence and support parents in providing a nurturing, safe, and stable home environment for healthy child development.

Teaching children and adolescents in school-based programs to address conflict resolution, communication and anger management.

Offering resources, such as parent education and home visiting programs, for parents living in domestic violence shelters and those transitioning from abusive relationships.

Promoting legislative efforts that increase funding and support cross-training and collaboration among child protection, domestic violence and social service agencies as well as juvenile, family and criminal court systems.


  1. Edleson, JL. “The Overlap Between Child Maltreatment and Women Battering.” Violence against Women (February 1999) 5:134-54.
  2. Straus, MA and Gelles, RJ (1990). Physical Violence in American Families. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers.
  3. Spears, Linda. “Building Bridges between Domestic Violence Organizations and Child Protective Services.” February 2000.
  4. U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect. (1995). A Nation’s Shame: Fatal Child Abuse and Neglect in the United States. Washington, D.C. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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