A new survey of Californians' attitudes on domestic violence found that the vast majority of respondents believe that the abuse can happen to anyone, and 66 percent said that they have a friend or family member who has been a victim.
The survey is a rare measure of public attitudes and awareness toward domestic violence among adults in the state.
It was conducted by San Francisco polling firm Tulchin Research and was funded by the Blue Shield of California Foundation. The survey was conducted in English and Spanish with 900 randomly selected adults who were called on cellphones and landlines. The findings were released to California Watch this week.
Victim advocates said that the results of the survey illustrate a marked shift in public opinion and awareness of the topic in recent decades.
Thirty years ago, domestic violence “was not an issue that people would talk about or that people felt was a serious problem,” said Esta Soler, president of Futures Without Violence, a national anti-violence organization that receives funding from the Blue Shield of California Foundation. “For most people, they thought that if it happened at all, it happened someplace else.”