Study: One-third of adolescent girls victimized by dating partnerby Sasha Aslanian, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Federal statistics report that one in every three adolescent girls in the United States is a victim of physical, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner.
The Preventing Teen Violence Report issued recommendations for preventing teen dating violence, better coordination of prevention efforts and more youth leadership on anti-violence work. The state health department and the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women released a statewide plan Thursday to prevent teen dating violence.
Sasha Cotton of the Coalition for Battered Women says over 18 months, study authors interviewed hundreds of young Minnesotans about what they've witnessed and experienced.
Among 12th grade girls, one in seven said they had been hit, hurt, threatened or made to feel afraid by their partner, the Minnesota Student Survey found.
"In the last 18 months, 10 people under the age of 21 have died in Minnesota as a result of dating violence," Cotton said. "The clothesline project that is over in this corner recognizes the lives that have been lost due to dating violence by people under the age of 21 in Minnesota."
Minnesota was one of six states that received funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to fund the 18-month study.
Atlanta Shilts 14, is a student at Red Wing High School who is working to educate other teens about violence prevention.
"Some parents won't even believe their kids when they say they're in a bad situation, they're just... they won't believe them," Shilts said. "But what I gotta say is if someone comes to you like this, believe them. Because you might be the only person that they trust. And then if you don't believe them, they don't know who to run to."