This week I’d like to discuss the ‘Black Dot Campaign’. Have you heard of it?
The Black Dot campaign was an idea that came about to help victims of domestic violence. If a victim was in a vulnerable situation, she could put a black dot on the palm of her hand to indicate to people that she was in need of help.
The idea started to go viral in September, showing up all over Facebook and Twitter.
There were two problems with this idea. First, if the abuser read about the Black Dot Campaign and saw the dot on his victim’s hand, he might lash out. This would put the victim in more danger. Also, many victims assumed that professionals in the medical field, such as counselors, doctors, and nurses, knew about the campaign and were equipped to help the victim. Unfortunately, this was not the case. Many professionals were not aware.
Because of these problems, the Black Dot Campaign did not have the effect it was intended to have. The potential for more violence led to the end of the campaign. Information was removed from social media sites and people were warned not to place dots on their hands if they were in danger.
While this campaign was well intended, it did not become an outlet for victims of domestic violence. It did, however, raise awareness to the risks women have in leaving their abuser. It showed how trapped and isolated women can be in an abusive relationship and their real struggle to break free. Any time we are raising awareness and educating the public, positive things happen.
If you are in an abusive relationship, please do not try the Black Dot Campaign. Please reach out to your local domestic violence organization or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233.
Remember, if we can help just one woman, we’ve done our job.