Domestic Violence: The Ahimsa House

Domestic Violence: The Ahimsa House

Posted By Dina Khismatulina - Atlanta Family Law Attorney || 2-Jun-2016

I am really excited to write this blog post and to share information about an amazing and rare organization I recently learned about. I am in utter disbelief that I only now found out about this organization and I am thankful that they exist and are located in Georgia. It is a unique source of help that enable many people to reach safety.

I want to introduce Ahimsa House and encourage all of you to help them if you can. It is a non-profit organization that helps animals that are victims of domestic violence, so that the pets’ owners could leave the abusive situation and reach safety. Ahimsa House works in collaboration with different domestic violence shelters and law enforcement in Georgia. You can read more about Ahimsa House and survivor's stories at http://ahimsahouse.org/survivor-stories/

I have previously read about the correlation between domestic violence and animal abuse, but could not imagine the statistics to be so devastating. Here are some numbers, per the American Humane Association, in connection with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence: 71% of pet-owning women entering women’s shelters reported that their batterer had injured, maimed, killed or threatened family pets for revenge or to psychologically control victims. Further, between 25% and 40% of battered women are unable to escape abusive situations because they worry about what will happen to their pets should they leave as majority of shelters don’t allow victims to bring pets with them. For more statistics, please see http://www.americanhumane.org/interaction/support-the-bond/fact-sheets/animal-abuse-domestic-violence.html?referrer=https://www.google.com

Ahimsa House has a twenty–four hour statewide crisis line and offers emergency and temporary shelter and veterinary care for pets. They work with different families and organizations to foster diverse types of animals and get them veterinary care. Ahimsa House has only two employees and is forced to rely on the help of numerous volunteers. Ahimsa House takes in not only dogs and cats, but birds, horses, and other pets. They can pick up and transport pets, get them all their necessary vaccinations and veterinary care and arrange temporary foster families for the pets. In many abuse situations, pets are either poisoned, injured, or neglected and require an extensive veterinary care including surgeries. Ahimsa House works with different organizations to make good things happen and even advocates for the pets to be included in the Temporary Protective orders.

Having handled many domestic violence cases as a lawyer, I can say that it is very hard to overestimate the fact that such place as Ahimsa House exists in Georgia. It gives hope to many people in abusive situations to have a safe way out – and not only for them and their children, but for their four–legged friends as well - victims who otherwise would not have a chance to get out without sacrificing lives of their pets.

Please spread the word and consider either donating or volunteering for Ahimsa House. http://ahimsahouse.org

Dina Khismatulina

Categories: Family Law

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