New research reveal that attitudes in California about domestic violence have evolved significantly in recent years. Now the vast majority of respondents believe that the abuse can happen to anyone, and 66 percent said that they have a friend or family member who has been a victim, according to a story in today’s Huffington Post titled “Domestic Violence Survey Shows Shift in Attitudes, Awareness.” The story draws from research done by the San Francisco polling firm Tulchin Research and was funded by the Blue Shield of California Foundation.
As reported in Huffington Post, “Victim advocates said that the results of the survey illustrate a marked shift in public opinion and awareness of the topic in recent decades.
“Thirty years ago, domestic violence ‘was not an issue that people would talk about or that people felt was a serious problem,’ said Esta Soler, president of Futures Without Violence, a national anti-violence organization that receives funding from the Blue Shield of California Foundation. “For most people, they thought that if it happened at all, it happened someplace else.”
“Futures Without Violence, formerly known as the Family Violence Prevention Fund, has previously conducted surveys on attitudes related to domestic violence. According to its 1994 survey of Californians, 32 percent reported knowing women who were physically abused. The organization’s 2000 poll of American men found that 51 percent of the respondents said that they believed a friend or family member was in a physically abusive relationship; that number ticked up to 56 percent in a 2007 poll.
‘The new survey of California adults also explored opinions on prevention programs for adolescents and teens, and respondents largely supported teaching high school and middle school students about dating abuse as a way of preventing domestic abuse. Eighty-nine percent of the survey respondents said that they think it is appropriate to teach high school students about the topic, and 82 percent said it was also appropriate to discuss the issue with middle school students.”