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Supporting Survivors

A survivor of interpersonal violence has just experienced an event that potentially left them feeling a lack of power. The last thing you want to do is tell a survivor that they must or need to do something. Rather, ask them what they would like to do. Give them the power of choosing.

  • Listen without judgement
  • Tell them that you believe them and you are sorry this happened to them
  • Layout the different options and ask how you can help
  • Support whatever decision they make
  • Follow up with them at a later date

Remember: not all survivors respond in the same manner. There is not a prescribed way for survivors to act.

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This project is supported by Grant No. 2016-WA-AX-0013 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, US Department of Justice. The Opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.