99% of US households see pets as family members or close companions. This same wonderful, feel-good statistic depicting the human-animal bond is being leveraged by abusers where pets become a pawn to impose power and control over the victims. This webinar explores the concept of the Link where animal cruelty co-exists with other forms of family violence.
Leading the webinar is Phil Arkow. He is the Coordinator of the National LINK Coalition and is an internationally acclaimed lecturer, author, and educator. He is active in the animal abuse and family violence space having presented over 300 times across the world and authored over 95 reference works on the topic.
Specifics of his discussion are on:
- The multi-disciplinary collaborative approach required to address the Link to effectively hold abusers accountable and keep communities safe.
- The National Link Coalition – their mission and the work and initiatives they’re involved in.
- The four forms of family violence in the concept of the Link, how they operate traditionally in silos, how the Link demonstrates the overlap across these, and the eight animal/human violence links.
- The human-animal bond: The prevalence of pets in the US, animals’ relationship with children and women in homes, and how this bond is exploited by abusers and becomes ominous with the Link.
- The history of anti-cruelty laws and the disconnect between the public perception of animals and their legal standing.
- Why animal abuse should be taken seriously as it can predict and escalate into other forms of abuse and recognition of the Link is key to stopping different forms of violence and crime in the community.
- Animal cruelty challenges in terms of reporting, definition of concepts, lack of public consensus, marginalization of animal welfare agencies, and lack of criminal justice support.
- Developments and efforts being made at the federal, state, and local levels to address these challenges.
- Viewing animal cruelty as a crime of violence on a global scale that overlaps with other crimes.
- Key research findings and case studies indicating how the Link manifests, its impact on animals, people, and communities, and the need for a collaborative approach to effectively address it.
- A rundown of the reasons for adults and children perpetrating cruelty.
- A brief history and government efforts to address child maltreatment.
- Study findings that illustrate the animal abuse-child maltreatment link.
- Barriers for domestic violence victims to seek help and how pet-friendly shelters is bridging this gap.
- The intergenerational cycle of violence and power and control wheel that demonstrates how domestic violence and animal cruelty coincide with each other.
- Issues that the elder population is struggling with and how these can lead to opportunities for both elder abuse and animal abuse.
- Hoarding: How the elderly are prone to this, how it creates a cycle of isolation, and the different types of hoarders.
- Developments and recommendations in response, policy, programs, and legislation to address and prevent animal cruelty and the Link, assist victims, and keep communities safe.
Questions from the webinar participants are on:
- Recommendations for courtroom professionals on the impact of the Link on civil cases.
- Effective treatment and approach for animal cruelty offenders.
- Link statistics for horses and other larger animals.
- How lethality risks double for responders when calls for service involve both domestic violence and animal abuse.
- How animal abuse typically co-occurs with elder abuse.
Resources and Handouts
- Resource Site: https://nationallinkcoalition.org/
- Resource: To receive the National Link Coalition monthly newsletter email firstname.lastname@example.org
- “The most valuable thing I learned from this webinar is the acknowledgment from more agencies that animal cruelty is a serious crime that needs the attention of law enforcement agencies nationwide”. — Ronald
- “I can so see this being an issue in DV cases and divorce/custody. I love the idea of shelter animals going to people’s shelters and juvenile courts for therapy. I plan to talk to our local entities about this as our shelters are full of animals that they cannot accept any more.” — Rhonda
- “ALL LE, PROSECUTORS, AND JUDGES SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO TAKE THIS COURSE. THIS IS THE BEST COURSE I’VE TAKEN ON THE SUBJECT YET.” — Michelle
- “Learn something new from Phil with every presentation.” — Marilyn
- “Phil is always awesome, always on point, and always informative. Great job here again.” — Nathalie
- “The linking between the abuse categories and having the research data to back it up. Very interesting topic and an enjoyable presentation.” — Cynthia
This webinar has been certified by the National Animal Care & Control Association and is approved for 1 Continuing Education Unit. Please refer to your NACA membership portal for current CEU submission process. Current NACA Members who attend the live presentation or watch the recording will be able to download a jointly issued attendance certificate that includes the National Animal Care & Control Association logo. Visit the NACA training page for a complete list of future trainings.