DAWSON CREEK, B.C. – The Dawson Creek RCMP released a public service announcement alerting residents of the signs of intimate partner abuse or violence.
Verbal, sexual, emotional and financial abuse are also signs of intimate partner violence.
The report states that in 2019, 30 per cent of violent crimes reported were intimate partner violence.
Constable Emma Baron, media relations officer with Dawson Creek RCMP, says victims are often women, with the offender commonly being male. She adds that four out of five victims of intimate partner homicides are women.
Baron says the most dangerous time for a victim is during the breakup of a relationship and the weeks following the separation.
Below is a list of signs that someone may be a victim of intimate partner violence:
- The victim may act differently when their partner is around;
- The victim tries to change the subject when questioned about their partner’s behaviour;
- The victim seems to be controlled by their partner and is reluctant or nervous to make decisions by themselves;
- The victim is withdrawn from their friends and family;
- The victim’s online presence is controlled or regulated by their partner;
- The victim has an uncharacteristic change in risk-taking behaviour, such as gambling, consuming drugs or alcohol;
- The victim appears to have a drop in their school or work performance. They have trouble maintaining employment;
- The victim is criticized or humiliated by their partner in front of others;
- The partner is strict about the victim’s whereabouts, who they interact with and generally controls their schedule.
RCMP encourages a proactive approach from friends and family to assist those in abusive relationships before violence, or police involvement occur.
A number of resources are available in Dawson Creek to provide resources to people who experience abusive relationships, according to Baron.
If the police become involved, they reportedly have the discretion to make proactive referrals on behalf of the victim.
There is a B.C.-specific website for resources and steps to take if a person is the victim of a crime.
Additionally, the South Peace Community Resources Society has a website with a page on the programs they offer, including victim services.