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Goal Statement: My goal would be to provide increase support and resources for victims of interpersonal violence to reduce overall rates of domestic violence in Asotin County.

Significant Findings: I currently reside in Clarkston, Washington, or within Asotin County. Clarkston holds numerous strengths and challenges. Some strengths of Clarkston include a lower unemployment percentage, less severe housing problems, and reduced commute time to work compared to Washington state (County Health Rankings, 2023). Challenges within Clarkston include an increased percentage of habits that are attributed to poor health outcomes, such as smoking, physical inactivity, and alcohol-impaired deaths, compared to Washington state average percentages (County Health Rankings, 2023). Clarkston is also ranked 34 of 39 counties within the state regarding health outcomes (County Health Rankings, 2023). As a future Clinical Mental Health Counselor, a problem that I would like to address within my community would be the increasing trend of domestic violence. Domestic violence can be broadly defined as power imbalances within relationships resulting in nonconsensual control, manipulation, or an attempt to overpower one’s partner emotionally, physically, or financially (Smith-Clapham et al., 2023). There are many negative consequences to domestic violence, including physical ailments such as diabetes, heart disease, and chronic illnesses (Smith-Clapham et al., 2023). Some potential risk factors contributing to abuse include food insecurity, chronic stress, or mental illness (Waterman et al., 2023). External world events can also impact this, such as the COVID pandemic, where the United States domestic violence rates increased from 21% to 35% (Smith-Clapham et al., 2023). Therefore, multiple levels of intervention will likely be necessary to bring positive change to Clarkston. How DV will be appropriately addressed should be tailored to the population served, needs of the community and preventing future violence through larger systems.

Objectives/Strategies/Interventions/Next Steps: Some prevention strategies include increasing access to food, collaboration amongst community stakeholders, psychoeducation groups for survivors of DV, and promoting policies that will prevent future violence in relationships (Smith-Clapham et al., 2023). Direct access to food would help reduce food insecurity, removing some of the financial stress. Group support with providers who are competent in providing DV services could help prevent future abusive relationships to occur and for survivors to have some comradery through their journey. Lastly, changing and implementing policies that reduce rates of abuse from a legal standpoint can help other people get out of abusive relationships outside of Asotin county. Ultimately increasing funding and promoting collective action against interpersonal violence can significantly reduce the rates of violence against women in Clarkston.