GLADSTONE, Mich. — In recognition of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Michigan State Police (MSP) is seeking to educate citizens regarding domestic violence and the resources available to friends and family to help support victims.

Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior in which one person uses physical, sexual or emotional abuse to control another person. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States.

If one knows someone who is being abused, a person can help them by:

■ Educating oneself about domestic violence by seeking information from websites and support groups.

■ Remembering there is no “quick fix” to domestic violence.

■ Making sure the victim knows people believe them.

■ Listening attentively.

■ Not blaming the victim for what happened to them.

■ Taking the victim’s fears seriously and expressing sincere concern.

■ Not making judgments.

■ Reminding the victim that what has occurred is not their fault.

For more information on local domestic violence support services, people may visit the Michigan Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence Web site at or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).