Our home is supposed to be our haven. The place we go to get away from the stresses and problems of the world. But sadly, this is not the reality for thousands of Americans. For many, their home is a place of abuse and violence. Where others drink to excess, abused them, both physically and verbally, and make their life a living hell.
Because these victims live with their abusers, getting help is difficult. They risk experiencing heightened abuse if the offender finds out the victim is seeking help. They may even get killed, if the person is dangerous.
But one recent campaign is making life easier for people experiencing domestic abuse. It gives them a way to announce their situation without putting themselves at risk. It’s called The Black Dot Campaign. And now that you know about it, you must keep your eyes peeled for individuals with black dots on the center of their palms…
When one English woman, and a former domestic abuse victim realized that many other women experience the same torture she did, she created The Black Dot Campaign to give them a voice against their abuser.
The campaign raises awareness for spousal abuse and gives victims a platform to speak out against their tormentors without raising suspicions.
It simply asks victims of domestic violence to draw a black dot on the palm of their hand. This signal gives the victim a discrete sign to alert the authorities to help without letting their abuser know. While the abuser might notice if their victim is calling 911 or telling friends the truth, this black dot allows everyone, even strangers, an opportunity to intervene and help the victim get the resources they need to feel safe at home.
Since its launch, the Facebook page of The Black Dot Campaign has been very successful. With hundreds of followers, The Black Dot Campaign gives people a chance to help those suffering from domestic abuse.
“A social media campaign which was launched to offer sufferers of domestic violence support has been pulled over fears it could alert abusers to their calls for help. The Black Dot Campaign encourages those subject to domestic violence to draw a simple black dot on the palm of their hands as a sign to alert others to their situation.”
The Facebook page also suggests what to do if the abuser figures out the meaning of the black dot on the palm: “What happens if the abuser sees the dot and knows its meaning? If it’s true that ‘Domestic violence victims are most at risk for getting killed in the moment that they decide to leave their partners’ (Source: Huffington Post), then it stands to reason that using the dot to appeal for help could be dangerous.”
Snopes released the following statement confirming this detail:
“While the Black Dot Campaign was started with good intentions, it do not yet offer a reliable way for victims of domestic violence to get help…The black dot campaign is merely one person’s idea for helping victims of domestic violence. It is not an officially-sanctioned program; it is not taught to police officers, doctors or anyone else who may be able to help someone in an abusive relationship. While victims of domestic violence can certainly draw a black dot on their palms, they should not rely on that symbol’s bringing anyone to their aid.”