What Is Family Violence?

Family violence as defined by the Women’s Charter as follows:

  • willfully or knowingly placing or attempting to place a family member in fear of hurt
  • causing hurt to a family member by an act which he or she ought to know would cause and result in hurt
  • wrongful confining or restraining a family member against their will
  • causing continual harassment with intent to cause anguish to a family member, including verbal abuse, psychological or emotional abuse.

The following acts are considered to be acts of family violence:

Physical abuse

  • Physical acts such as punching, kicking, pushing, choking, slapping, bruising or hitting with objects
  • Denial of food or water, sleep, shelter or medicine
  • Unwanted sexual behavior such as forcing sexual activity on the family member, including one’s spouse

Psychological abuse

  • Insulting or humiliating a person
  • Intimidating a person by screaming, making threats, harassment or destroying property
  • Emotional blackmail or using emotions to manipulate a person
  • Demeaning a person in front of others or in public places
  • Monitoring and controlling a person’s activities and relationships
  • Persistent hostility, including ignoring or blatantly rejecting a person
  • Confining a person within the home or stopping a person from going somewhere

Click on these links for more information

Dealing with family violence
What can I do if I’m facing family violence?
Getting a Personal Protection Order (PPO)
Making a Safety Plan
How to help a friend/relative/neighbour facing family violence