Sonoma County Maternal Child and Adolescent Health

Intimate Partner Violence is a leading cause of death in pregnancy and postpartum

Guns and domestic violence make for a deadly mix. The risk for death may be five times higher when guns are present. One Review of Homicide Reports found between 2010 and 2019 fifty-six percent of women murdered by an intimate partner were killed with a gun.

A UC Davis study links firearm purchasing and unsecure firearm storage to the pandemic.

The National Commission on Covid-19 and Criminal Justice reports evidence of increased

Domestic Violence during the pandemic.

View a discussion of the UC Davis Study

In California, anyone charged with a domestic violence misdemeanor is prohibited from having or purchasing a gun or ammunition. Any individual can seek a domestic violence protective order against:

  • A former or current dating or romantic relationship partner
  • Any person who is currently or has in the past resided with an individual
  • Any family member, even if that person has never resided with the individual

"Every protective order MUST STATE the person is prohibited from owning, possessing, purchasing, receiving, or attempting to purchase or receive, a firearm while the protective order is in effect". Any firearms the person owns must be surrendered to law enforcement immediately upon request, or within 24 hours if not asked.

For Support with a Protective Order contact Family Justice Center 707-565-8255.

Click below to download their flyer:

Download Family Justice Center Flyer

1 in 4 Women experience Intimate Partner Violence in their Lifetime

Resources for talking about IPV

The National Domestic Violence Hotline:


How to Create a Safety Plan

The Hotline 24 hour Text Support:

Text "start" to 88788

24 hour live chat online

24 hour hotline:


The Equality Wheel

The Power and Control Wheel

Domestic Violence can affect anyone, No one ever deserves to be abused.

Learn more about how culture, race, gender, sexuality, class or economic status, even education, can play a role in making a decision to leave an abusive relationship.

Domestic Violence May Look Different to Different People

Futures Without Violence believes that together, Health Centers and IPV Advocacy Programs

can help reduce Intimate Partner Violence, empower clients. and improve community health.

Click below to view their Toolkit:

IPV Toolkit for Health Centers

These can be very difficult situations and conversations. Home Visitors should assess for their own safety before beginning a conversation. Clients should be advised of emergency numbers to call. "Are there any firearms in the house" can be an important assessment question when scheduling a home visit.

Thank you for all of your hard work improving lives in our community. -Liz

Sonoma County Maternal Child and Adolescent Health