Spousal abuse is a highly underestimated offence that continues to remain hidden between the law and justice. This controversial type of violence is a serious crime that is not directly penalized through today’s law system. Instead, it is the individual’s actions that must be charged through the Canadian Criminal Code. On average, a Canadian woman is murdered every six days by a current or previous partner. Many cases of domestic violence portray the husband physically and/or emotionally abusing their wife. However, domestic violence can go both ways. Two out of three reported spousal abuse victims are women and the other 33 percent are male. Typically, emotional abuse is more common in men, whereas women more frequently experience physical abuse. Domestic spousal violence is an indirect criminal act that physically and emotionally impacts victims, and negatively influences the dynamic of family kinship within Canadian Society.
A). Exploring the Legal Issue of Domestic Violence
The Criminal Code and Spousal Abuse
Although spousal domestic violence is against the law, those being prosecuted are charged under the Canadian Criminal Code, not for domestic violence directly. Since victims cannot press charges against the abuser themselves, they must receive aid from the police force. Some possible charges police can act upon with sufficient evidence are; “intimidation (section 423), uttering threats (section 264.1) forcible confinement (section 279), indecent or harassing telephone calls (section 372) assault (sections 265 and 266), assault with a weapon or causing bodily harm (section 267) aggravated assault (section 268) sexual assault (sections 265 and 271) sexual assault with a weapon, threats ...
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...e abuse is not something that is generally accepted. They require a much higher standard of proof when making an accusation against a woman. Yet, still with this proof they are blamed and perceived to be the true “batters” and accused of initiating the circumstances. According to research done by Denise Hines, a psychology professor at Clark University, "As a matter of fact, when the men called the police on their female partners they were just as likely to be arrested as she was." (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/it-is-not-just-women-who-are-the-victims-of-spousal-violence-1.941702) The police had deliberately told the men they were the true batterer and initiated the circumstances themselves. This shows the double standard our stereotypes have place on men. The hypocrisy in todays society influences the way individuals are treated and viewed in serious circumstances.
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