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Introduction

Working for a better life for America's families has a high priority on AFSCME's agenda.

As the leading union in the fight for women's rights, from the struggle for pay equity to fighting sexual harassment, AFSCME cannot ignore the plight of battered women. Indeed, AFSCME is in a position to make unique and important contributions to the campaign to end domestic violence.

Violence occurs more frequently in the home than anywhere else in our society. A woman is battered in the United States every 15 seconds. There were three million cases of child abuse reported in 1993. While men too are sometimes victims of domestic violence, it is overwhelmingly a women's and children's issue. Ninety-five percent of battered spouses are women.

Therefore, it is a virtual certainty that, among the workers AFSCME represents, many are women who after work return to homes where they or their children will be battered.

Moreover, among AFSCME's 1.3 million members are hundreds of thousands of police officers, dispatchers, hospital emergency room personnel and social workers who confront the problem of domestic violence on a daily basis.

This booklet is intended to provide AFSCME members with information about domestic violence to help them deal with the issue whether they encounter it on the job or in their personal lives.

Gerald W. McEntee William Lucy
International President International Secretary-Treasurer

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