October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and we are pleased to be able to broaden our reach in the community through a newly implemented billboard campaign. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous, and very generous local donor, 180 has a presence on three high traffic roadside billboards placed throughout Monmouth County.

The messaging for the billboards created in collaboration with our donor, reflects three messages related to very prevalent forms of domestic violence which are non-physical. Psychological and verbal abuse can often be spotted as signs of an unhealthy relationship but sometimes these signs can be difficult to see. The dynamic of abusive relationships go beyond the stress and anxiety that may be found in any relationship and it is important for a victim to understand exactly what it is they are experiencing. Understanding that domestic violence is a pattern of behaviors used to gain or maintain power and control may help and speaking to 180 counselors, can help victims determine if what they are experiencing is domestic violence.

The billboard messaging states: Domestic Violence is not only physical. Suggesting that the reader consider: Are you being manipulated? Are you being controlled? Are you being intimidated, put down, degraded? The billboards emphasize: You are not alone, 180 is here for you. In addition to incorporating our 24/7 domestic violence hotline on the billboard, an easy to remember web address was used to direct readers: stopallabuse.org and which immediately routes users to 180’s website: 180nj.org

180 is very grateful to our donor for providing the philanthropy which made this project possible and we also extend sincere appreciation to Princeton Strategic Communications for designing the billboards probono. 180 is very pleased to be able to showcase these billboards during domestic violence awareness month and hope that even more survivors will seek our help as a result.

Read more about the various forms of domestic violence below:

Financial: Controlling all income and expenses, preventing a partner from working, or forcing clients to turn over their paychecks to the abuser, restricting access to financial accounts, limiting access to cash or credit cards, ruining a partners credit.

Physical: Hitting, slapping, pushing, biting, punching, kicking, restraining, choking, smothering, or strangulation. Strangulation is one of the most lethal forms of domestic violence: unconsciousness may occur within seconds and death within minutes.

Psychological: Intimidating a person with threatening looks and behavior, stalking, monitoring by using technology, using spyware and location tracking devices, monitoring technology, posting false information about you on social media, isolation from friends and family, or attacking self-esteem by blaming, manipulating, criticizing, and humiliating.

Sexual: Manipulating or forcing a person to do something sexual or any coerced, non-consensual, and unwanted sexual behavior.

Verbal: Cursing/swearing, yelling, name-calling, criticizing thoughts or feelings, and put-downs.