Although domestic abuse has been a prevalent problem for decades, if not centuries, it has of late–with the NFL scandals–taken much more of a noticeable role in our general societal awareness. In 2013, the Colorado legislature took significant steps to address the misconceptions surrounding domestic abuse–such as the false impression held by many that abuse can only consist of physical violence. Now the statutes and legislative intent is clear: stalking, harassment, and coercion are just as dangerous and abusive as a punch in the eye. While these statutory changes did not address every conceivable issue, they were a huge step forward in protecting victims of abuse. See, e.g., Margot F. Alicks, “The New Civil Protection Order Statute: Catch 22,” Colorado Law Week, July 21, 2014 (available at http://www.lawweekonline.
But there is an interesting new grassroots movement to ensure that victims feel they have a safe way to seek the help they need. Some victims of domestic abuse who are too afraid to call the police or otherwise take formal action have been placing a black dot on their palms. This enables them to flash their palms in a cry for help without feeling too at risk. And they are the most at risk when they finally take action to leave, which often follows several unsuccessful attempts to disengage.
It is interesting that, just a month after the “movement” was created on Facebook, the page has disappeared. See http://www.wptv.com/news/
However, what is clear is that this informal movement may be a sign that the formal processes in place still require attention and improvement to serve the victims they are intended to protect.
For more information on the Black Dot Campaign, see:
The information in this post is not legal advice—it is only legal information. To obtain legal advice by hiring the attorneys of Broxterman Alicks McFarlane PC as your counsel, please contact the firm at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-331-6432.