Skip to main content

Lesson #1: Domestic Violence


Material for a 3-hour lesson, part of the course on Domestic Violence, developed by the Police Development Unit of the OSCE Spillover Monitor Mission to Skopje.


This lesson introduces participants to the commonality and complexity of domestic violence. It manifests its presence in all forms of unlawful behavior ranging from misdemeanor to violent criminal offenses against life and body. It is therefore important to gain an understanding of how the pervasive and destructive influence of domestic violence erodes the cultural, domestic, religious, economic and political foundations of all societies. In that context, domestic violence has become an internationally recognized serious human rights issue that should be handled within the context of criminal justice rather than disregarded as a private family matter of limited social consequence. The recognition of such acts by the criminal justice system acknowledges the need for protection against victimization. In doing so, the initial responsibility for containment of the violence and protection of victims should be lawfully delegated to the police. However, responsibility for the sociological implications and impact should be the concern of all community institutional leaders to influence the reduction of social acceptance.

Participants will have the opportunity to discuss the implications of domestic violence as it affects Macedonian society and explore existing and needed legal protections to reduce violence and victimization. Exercises will aid participants in understanding the psychology of victims and offenders through the distinct stages of the ‘cycle of violence’.

The goal of this lesson is to provide participants with a definition and an overview of the crime of domestic violence and its consequences for the individual and society.

At the end of this lesson, participants will be able to:

  1. Define Domestic Violence in terms of the legal aspects, victims, perpetrators and factors that perpetuate domestic violence.
  2. State the Human Rights implications of domestic violence upon individuals, the family household and society.
  3. List the three phases of the Cycle of Violence and explain how each relates to the escalation of domestic violence.
  4. List reasons why early intervention in domestic violence situations can help protect the rights of the individual and prevent future assaults.