Domestic Violence and Abuse

Abuse occurs within all age ranges, ethnic backgrounds, and financial levels. And while women are more commonly victimized, men are also abused — often verbally and emotionally. Abuse is a serious and complex problem, though often hidden and denied, which can present itself in many ways.

Physical Abuse / Domestic Abuse: Abuse involving contact intended to cause feelings of intimidation, pain, injury, or other physical suffering or bodily harm

Sexual Abuse: The forcing of undesired sexual behavior by one person upon another.

Child Abuse: The physical or emotional or sexual mistreatment of children.

Emotional Abuse / Psychological Abuse: Abuse characterized by a person subjecting or exposing another to behavior that is psychologically harmful. Emotional abuse includes verbal abuse such as yelling, name-calling, blaming, and shaming. Isolation, intimidation, and controlling behavior also fall under emotional abuse. Emotional and psychological abusers often use threats of physical violence to control their victims.

Elder Abuse or Abuse of a Vulnerable Adult: The physical, sexual, or emotional abuse of an elderly person, or a person who has a physical or mental condition that substantially impairs his or her ability to care for his or her needs.


You Don’t Have to Live in Fear!

If you are Afraid for your Safety or Have Been Abused by your Partner:
– Dial 911 if you or your children are in immediate danger
– National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-787-3224
– Community Referral Agency:  Local Hotline:  1-800-261-7233
– Polk County Child Protective Services: 715-485-8400

How to Report a Case of Child Abuse or Abuse of a Vulnerable Adult:
– Contact the Polk County Human Services Department at 715-485-8400, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
– Please request to speak to the Child Protective Services or Adult Protective Services Access Worker.
– After business hours and on weekends, please contact the Polk County Sheriff’s Department 715-485-8300.
– It is imperative to report immediately. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE NEXT DAY!