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One in three women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime, according to the YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee.
 To help women conquer this abuse, the Vanderbilt Center for Women’s Health has partnered with the YWCA to promote its Crisis & Information Line for victims of domestic violence. The hotline is free and confidential, answered 24 hours a day by staff and volunteers trained in crisis intervention.
 “We wanted to take an active role in fighting domestic violence,” said Robin Mutz, R.N.C, M.P.P.M., administrative director of the Women’s Patient Care Center and Nursing Support Services. “We want to be good partners to improve the care of women and children in the community and give access to all the resources that are available.”
 Cards advertising the Crisis & Information Line will be available in bathrooms around women’s care areas at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, such as clinics in One Hundred Oaks and Williamson County and the Labor and Delivery area at Vanderbilt University Hospital. They are written in English on one side and Spanish on the other.
The cards, the size of a business card, are often called “shoe cards” because a woman is able to slip one into her shoe and sneak it past her abuser.
YWCA 20365 safety card         YWCA 20365 safety card
“We always screen for domestic violence, but the women may not be able to be truthful because they are not always alone,” Mutz said. “In an emergency, women don’t have time to go through the phone book. We hope they will keep the card in a ready place or enter the number into their speed dial.”
Recent studies have shown that pregnancy and abuse are closely related.
“Abuse has always been an issue for women, but we know it also affects pregnancy and the health of children,” Mutz said. “Women may think a pregnancy will make the relationship OK, or abusers use pregnancy to control the relationship. Many women have their control of contraception taken away. They don’t understand it’s not OK to be treated that way, and we want to help break that cycle of violence.”

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