Fast facts on domestic violence (intimate partner)

CNN Editorial Research

Here is an overview of information and statistics regarding domestic violence (intimate partner).

According to Centers for the Control and Prevention of Disasters, intimate partner violence includes victimization by current and former spouses or current and former dating partners. The violence can include physical, sexual, emotional and economic abuse, according to the Department of Justice. Office on Violence Against Women.


Thirty-five percent of women worldwide have experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-marital sexual violenceaccording to The United Nations.

According to a Global Homicide Study, of all women worldwide who were victims of homicide in 2017, more than a third were killed by a partner in a current or past relationship.

United States

Every year – More than 12 million women and men are victims of domestic violence, according to the National Domestic Violence Helpline.

Between 1995 and 2015, the rates of domestic violence perpetrated against women decreased by 65%.

26.1% of victims of intimate partner violence received help from a victim support organization in 2019, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline (and loveisrespect, its project for teens and young adults) answered 363,185 calls, chats and texts in 2020.


June 19, 1990 – S. 2754, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is presented to Congress by Senator Joseph Biden, but it is not acted.

June 1991 – The American Medical Association issues recommendations that physicians routinely inquire about possible abuse.

January 21, 1993 – Biden reintroduces the bill.

September 13, 1994 – President Bill Clinton signs the law on violence against women in the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act. It must be renewed every five years. The Act also establishes the Violence Against Women Policy Office and the Violence Against Women Grants Office (now the Violence Against Women Office of the Department of Justice).

February 21, 1996 – The National Domestic Violence Hotline receives its first calls and receives 4,826 calls in the first month.

1999 – The Office of Violence Against Women is created by merging the Office of Violence Against Women Policy and the Office of Violence Against Women Grants.

October 28, 2000 – The Violence Against Women Act of 2000 is reauthorized with new provisions and signed into law by President Clinton. New provisions include the Trafficking Victims Protection Act and expanded measures for battered immigrant women.

August 2, 2003 – The hotline receives its millionth call.

January 5, 2006 – The Violence Against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act 2005 is enacted by President George W. Bush, with new provisions on dating violence, Native American women and the use of DNA.

April 28, 2009 – The National Domestic Violence Hotline receives its two millionth call.

April 26, 2012 – The Senate votes S.1925 to reauthorize VAWA with expanded measures to include battered illegal immigrant women, Native American women, and the LGBT community.

May 16, 2012 – The House votes on HR 4970 to reauthorize VAWA. The House version omits the expanded measures of the Senate bill.

December 31, 2012 – For the first time since its enactment, VAWA expires. The VAWA, which must be renewed every five years, is not reauthorized by Congress.

March 7, 2013 – S.47, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act 2013 is enacted by President Barack Obama, with new provisions. The new provisions respond to the needs of undocumented immigrant women, Native American women, LGBT community and adolescent dating violence and reauthorize the Trafficking Victims Protection Act.

March 13, 2013 – Biden announces the Obama administration’s Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Demonstration Initiative as part of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

July 2013 – The National Domestic Violence Hotline receives its three millionth call.

March 9, 2015 – Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General declare that the world has made “uneven progress” in addressing violence against women and gender inequality and that it “still persists at alarming levels”.

January 2017 – US President Donald Trump signs the Executive Order “Improving Public Safety Inside the United States”. According to the Tahirih Justice Center, the order may prevent undocumented abused women from seeking legal protection for fear of deportation.

January 1, 2019 – Ireland’s Domestic Violence Act 2018 comes into force and offers new protections for victims of “coercive control,” a type of emotional and psychological abuse aimed at robbing a person of their self-esteem and agency.

February 15, 2019 – VAWA grant program expires the day after he is excluded from the funding bill that ends the partial government shutdown. House Democrats plan to push for an overhaul of legislation. HR1585, Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2019, is introduced March 7 and passed April 4. November 13, S.2843, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2019, is introduced in the Senate. Senate Republicans oppose the House bill for several reasons, including the inclusion of protections for transgender people and a provision that would bar those convicted of certain misdemeanor charges from purchasing firearms. No other action is taken in 2019 regarding the subsidy program.

March 17, 2021 – The House votes to pass HR1620, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act 2021. The bill is then received in the Senate but does not advance.

March 15, 2022 – the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act 2022 is signed into law by President Biden as part of a larger expense bill. The bill reauthorizes the VAWA grant program through 2027 and expands resources for violence prevention and economic protection for survivors.

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