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Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence

$100 will educate a domestic violence survivor in an 8-week financial empowerment class, putting them on the path to self-sufficiency.

Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence is an escalating pattern of coercive, controlling behavior that is used to exert control over an intimate partner. Types of abuse include physical abuse, verbal, emotional or psychological abuse, sexual abuse, or financial abuse (using money and financial tools to exert control).  Anyone, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, gender, social-economic status or religion can be a victim of domestic violence.  One out of four women and one out of seven men will be impacted in their lifetime and more than 100 homicides, due to domestic violence, happen each year in Pennsylvania.  

PCADV, a collaborative membership organization, joins with 59 local programs to deliver a continuum of services, support and systems change to help nearly 90,000 victims and survivors annually find safety, obtain justice and build lives free of abuse. While local domestic violence programs offer direct service to those in need, PCADV provides the infrastructure, support, expertise, and training to make their work effective.  

Through its Prevention work, PCADV strives to stop intimate partner violence before it starts. Prevention is carried out through a number of initiatives designed for colleges and universities, faith communities, men and boys, parents, athletic programs, Hispanic, LGBTQ, Aging/Elderly and other underserved or marginalized populations.  

Key intervention programming is available through local agencies and includes Civil Legal Representation (CLR), Lethality Assessment Screening (LAP) , Medical Advocacy (MAP), Housing and Economic Justice.  
 
Navigating a complex and often unfamiliar legal process is challenging for a survivor and is one of the most common barriers in leaving an abusive relationship. Within their county service areas, CLR attorneys provide direct legal representation during court proceedings for survivors on matters of divorce, custody, support, immigration, housing, and protection from abuse.  
 
The Lethality Assessment Program (LAP) strengthens partnerships between law enforcement and community-based domestic violence programs. Police officers who receive LAP training can identify the warning signs of domestic violence and connect victims with life-saving services, thereby potentially reducing domestic violence fatalities.  

The Medical Advocacy Program (MAP) allows advocates to train medical personnel in a variety of professional settings about both the visible and emotional signs of domestic abuse. A victim may not realize they could be in danger and the use of a screening tool during a medical visit may be the only opportunity for someone to connect with a domestic violence program or other key resources.  

Finding safe, affordable housing is crucial to a survivor’s ability to escape an abusive environment and start of life of independence. PCADV is committed to supporting member programs in developing new innovative housing initiatives and ensuring that current housing options are working for victims and survivors.  

Present in nearly 98% of domestic abuse cases, financial abuse is a barrier that often prevents victims from leaving an abusive relationship. PCADV’s Economic Justice and Empowerment initiative equips advocates to help survivors access education, develop budgeting skills, repair credit, build savings, find affordable housing, and gain meaningful employment with living wages. Financial empowerment leads survivors to self-sufficiency and a life that is sustainable and free from abuse.  

As the collective voice of its 59 local domestic violence programs, PCADV is committed to making a lasting impact in the Commonwealth through policy work at the state and federal level. PCADV actively advocates for change and works to block policies that create additional barriers or penalize victims. PCADV continues to push for and secure policy changes that improve safety for victims and survivors and has ushered multiple laws to strengthen Pennsylvania’s Protection from Abuse (PFA) Act, prevent domestic violence homicides, and provide housing protections for fleeing victims.  

Since its founding in 1976, PCADV, together with its local programs,  has helped more than 2.5 million victims and survivors of domestic violence across Pennsylvania.