National Stalking Awareness Month

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January is National Stalking Awareness Month

While legal definitions of stalking can differ depending on local, state, and federal laws, the National Center for Victims of Crime generally defines stalking as a “course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear.”

The National Center for Victims of Crime is the nation’s top organization for information related to crime victims and those affiliated with them, such as advocacy groups and human services organizations. Located in Washington, DC, The National Center for Victims of Crime launched the National Stalking Awareness Month (NSAM) campaign in 2004. NSAM was developed out of the work done by the Stalking Resource Center, a program of the National Center for Victims of Crime, funded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice.

This annual observance is an excellent way for the public, as well as law enforcement professionals and advocacy groups to learn more about stalking and ways to develop responses and solutions to this oftentimes faceless crime. The Stalking Resource Center of the National Center for Victims of Crime has developed a comprehensive website with educational materials, statistics, and resources.

Recent statistics have shown that 6.6 million people are stalked in one year in the United States. The crime of stalking perpetuates fear, anxiety, and social dysfunction in its victims, and can escalate into violence, sometimes fatal, without awareness and the involvement of law enforcement.

The National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) is also dedicated to the personal safety of all citizens, and encourages the public to view its resources on a variety of safety-oriented topics. Please visit the below links to learn more about NCPC’s initiatives.

  • If people are vigilant and take common-sense precautions, crime can be prevented. Take steps to avoid becoming a victim by reading NCPC’s resources on Violent Crime and Personal Safety.
  • NCPC also created a Rapid Response flyer on sexual assault that gives tips if someone is being followed. Click here to learn more.
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