October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month


U.S. gun deaths since January 1, 2019

Domestic violence. Gun violence. Sexual assault. Family abuse. The statistics are staggering.

JWI has worked for decades to break the cycle of violence against women - from college campuses to faith communities to Capitol Hill. 

Firearms are used to control, terrorize and intimidate victims and survivors of domestic violence:

Approximately 4.5 million American women alive today have been threatened by intimate partners with firearms. One million have actually been shot or shot at by their abusers.[1]

A survey of contacts by the National Domestic Violence Hotline found, of respondents’ whose abusers had access to firearms:

  • 10% said their abusers had fired a gun during an argument;

  • 67% believed their abusers were capable of killing them.[2]

Firearms are the weapon of choice for domestic violence homicides:

In 2015, 928 women were killed by male intimate partners. Most were killed with firearms.[3]

1 in 3 female murder victims and 1 in 20 male murder victims are killed by intimate partners.[4]

35% of all women killed by men are killed by intimate partners with guns.[5]

An abuser’s access to a firearm increases the risk of femicide by at least 400%.[6]

Domestic violence incidents involving firearms are twelve times more likely to result in death than incidents involving other weapons or bodily force.[7]

A ten-city study found 1/5 of homicide victims with temporary protective orders were murdered within two days of obtaining the order; 1/3 were murdered within the first month.[8]

48.6% of women killed by intimate partners are killed by dating partners.[9]

76% of women murdered by intimate partners and 85% of women who survived murder attempts were stalked first.[10]

44% of mass shootings between 2008 and 2013 involved intimate partners.[11]

Women in the US are 11 times more likely to be murdered with a gun than in other high-income nations.[12]


1 Sorenson, S. B., & Schut, R. A. (2016). Nonfatal gun use in intimate partner violence: A systematic review of the literature. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse.

2 National Domestic Violence Hotline (2014). Firearms and domestic violence. Retrieved from http://www.thehotline.org/resources/firearms-dv/#tab-id-2.

3 Violence Policy Center (2017). When men murder women: An analysis of 2015 homicide data. Retrieved from http://www.vpc.org/studies/wmmw2017.pdf.

4 Bridges, F. S., Tatum, K. M., & Kunselman, J. C. (2008). Domestic violence statutes and rates of intimate partner and family homicide: A research note. Criminal Justice Policy Review, 19(1), 117-130.

5 Violence Policy Center (2017). When men murder women: An analysis of 2015 homicide data. Retrieved from http://www.vpc.org/studies/wmmw2017.pdf.

6 Campbell, J.C., Webster, D., Koziol-McLain, J., Block, C., Campbell, D., Curry, M. A., Gary, F., Glass, N., McFarlane, J., Sachs, C., Sharps, P., Ulrich, Y., Wilt, S., Manganello, J., Xu, X., Schollenberger, J., Frye, V., & Lauphon, K. (2003). Risk factors for femicide in abusive relationships: Results from a multisite case control study. American Journal of Public Health, 93(7), 1089-1097.

7 Saltzman, L. E., Mercy, J. A., O’Carroll, P. W., Rosenberg, M. L., & Rhodes, P. H. (1992). Weapon involvement and injury outcomes in family and intimate assaults. JAMA, 267(22), 3043-3047.

8 Vittes, K. A. & Sorenson, S. B. (2008). Restraining orders among victims of intimate partner homicide. Injury Prevention, 14(1), 191-195.

9 Cooper, A. & Smith, E. L. (2011). Homicide trends in the United States, 1980-2008. Retrieved from http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/htus8008.pdf.

10 McFarlane, J. M., Campbell, J. C., Wilt, S., Sachs, C. J., Ulrich, Y. & Xu, X. (1999). Stalking and intimate partner femicide. Homicide Studies, 3(4), 300-316.

11 Everytown for Gun Safety (2014). Guns and violence against women: America’s uniquely lethal domestic violence problem. Retrieved from http://everytown.org/documents/2014/10/gun-laws-and-violence-against-women.pdf.

12 Mayors Against Illegal Guns. Guns laws and violence against women. Retrieved from http://3gbwir1ummda16xrhf4do9d21bsx.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wpcontent/uploads/2014/10/Guns-and-Violence-Against-Women-Everytown-for-Gun-Safety.pdf.

Learn more about our work to end violence against women, girls and families: