Journal of Interpersonal Violence
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Published By Sage Publications

1552-6518, 0886-2605

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110675
Alexa Sardina ◽  
Nicole Fox

Over the past two decades, America taken part of a broader global trend of “memorial mania” in which memorials dedicated to remembering injustice have exploded into public space. Memorials that facilitate the centering of marginalized narratives of violence hold significant power for social change. This article focuses on one such space: The Survivors Memorial in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Survivors Memorial opened in October 2020 and is the first public memorial honoring survivors of sexual violence. Despite the progress of the anti-rape and feminist movements as well as a variety of legal interventions designed to address sexual violence and empower, many survivors are left without a sense of justice or institutional or community recognition. Drawing on 21 in-depth, qualitative interviews with individuals involved in all aspects of the memorial project, this article documents how one community mobilized to create a space for survivors whose voices are often overlooked, disbelieved and silenced by the criminal justice system, practitioners, and communities. In focusing on how participants narrate the significance and meaning of the Survivors Memorial, this article uncovers how social, political, and local circumstances coalesced to make the Memorial possible. These factors include local leadership, the prevalence of sexual violence, the unique structure of the Minneapolis park structure, and the rise of the #MeToo movement. Interviews illuminate that participants worked to intentionally construct the Memorial as an accessible and visible space that centers on providing all sexual violence survivors with public acknowledgment of their experiences, while simultaneously engaging community members in dialogs about sexual violence, ultimately, laying the foundation for sexual violence prevention efforts.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110550
Marco Chacon ◽  
Anita Raj

In-school fighting often results in severe punishment and compromised learning outcomes, without adequate consideration of contextual factors or student vulnerabilities. In this study, using a large, nationally representative data sample from the 2019 Youth Risk Behavior Survey ( N = 13677), we assessed associations between a history of bullying victimization (at school and online) and past year fighting at school among U.S. high school students. Multiple regression models were used, adjusting first for demographics, and then for demographics and emotional-behavioral risks (depressive symptoms, alcohol consumption, and sexual violence victimization), for the total sample and then stratified by gender/sex. Both cyberbullying and in-school bullying were significantly associated with past year in-school fighting for the total sample, with associations retained, but marginally attenuated in fully adjusted models (cyberbullying: AOR: 1.30; 95% CI: 1.01–1.66 and in-school bullying: AOR: 1.96, 95% CI: 1.57–2.45). Gender/sex-stratified models demonstrated retained associations for males (cyberbullying: AOR: 1.93; 1.51–2.46 and in-school bullying: AOR: 2.70, 95% CI: 2.18–3.34) and females (cyberbullying: AOR: 1.89; 1.33–2.68 and in-school bullying: AOR: 1.66, 95% CI: 1.19–2.33) after adjusting for demographics, but only for males after adjusting for demographics and emotional-behavior risk factors (cyberbullying: AOR: 1.43; 95% CI: 1.07–1.93 and in-school bullying: AOR: 2.25; 95% CI: 1.73–2.92). These results demonstrate a significant association between bullying victimization and fighting, which was amplified for male students, and partially explained by social and emotional risks. This suggests that punitive approaches to fighting in school may be resulting in compounded harms for already vulnerable adolescents and that support-oriented approaches emphasizing conflict resolution, social-emotional well-being, positive gender identity development, and bullying prevention may be more appropriate.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110629
Susan Wright ◽  
Jessamyn Bowling ◽  
Sean McCabe ◽  
James Kevin Benson ◽  
Russell Stambaugh ◽  

Background As behaviors, alternative sexual (alt-sex) (i.e., kink, bondage, discipline, dominance, submission, sadism, and masochism , consensual non-monogamy, swinging, leather, and fetish practices) practitioners often emphasize that consent and boundaries are key elements of alt-sex activities. Despite these emphases, individuals experience consent violations and sexual assault both prior to engaging and during their involvement in alt-sex activities. Purpose This study examines alt-sex practitioners’ sexual assault and nonconsensual experiences in order to highlight potential means of intervention and prevention, as well as inform clinical and legal professionals. Methods In collaboration with the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom, this study uses an international survey of adults in alt-sex communities ( N = 2996) to examine sexual assault and nonconsensual experiences both within and outside of alt-sex contexts. Results We found a lower rate of consent violations in the alt-sex community (26%) compared to sexual assault as an adult outside of alt-sex contexts (34%) and sexual assault as a minor (40%). We found significant differences by groups in sexual assault as a minor (gender, sexual orientation, age, and live in the US or not), sexual assault outside of alt-sex contexts (gender, sexual orientation, and age), nonconsensual experiences in alt-sex contexts (gender, sexual orientation, age, and race), receiving nonconsensual touch in alt-sex contexts (gender, sexual orientation, and age), giving nonconsensual touch in alt-sex contexts (sexual orientation, age, living in the US or not, and race), and being falsely accused of nonconsensual touching in alt-sex contexts (gender, age, and living in the US or not). Within the most recent consent violation, the most common behaviors were non-kink related, except for lack of aftercare. Nearly 40% of participants reported the reasons for their most recent consent violation in alt-sex contexts were being selfish or caught up in the moment. Implications Focused interventions are needed to address how different populations are experiencing assault and violations in alt-sex contexts.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110520
Diane S. Morse ◽  
Catherine Cerulli ◽  
Melissa Hordes ◽  
Nabila El-Bassel ◽  
Jacob Bleasdale ◽  

The presence and severity of childhood and adult victimization increase the likelihood of substance use disorder (SUD), crimes, antisocial behaviors, arrests, convictions, and medical and psychiatric disorders among women more than men. These problems are compounded by the impact of social determinants of health (SDH) challenges, which include predisposition to the understudied, dramatic increase in opioid dependence among women. This study examined victimization, related SDH challenges, gender-based criminogenic risk factors for female participants, and public health opportunities to address these problems. We recruited women from the first national Opioid Intervention Court, a fast-track SUD treatment response to rapidly increasing overdose deaths. We present a consensual qualitative research analysis of 24 women Opioid Intervention Court participants (among 31 interviewed) who reported childhood, adolescent, and/or adult victimization experiences in the context of substance use and recovery, mental health symptoms, heath behaviors, and justice-involved trajectories. We iteratively established codes and overarching themes. Six primary themes emerged: child or adolescent abuse as triggers for drug use; impact of combined child or adolescent abuse with loss or witnessing abuse; adult abduction or assault; trajectory from lifetime abuse, substance use, and criminal and antisocial behaviors to sobriety; role of friends and family support in recovery; and role of treatment and opioid court in recovery, which we related to SDH, gender-based criminogenic factors, and public health. These experiences put participants at risk of further physical and mental health disorders, yet indicate potential strategies. Findings support future studies examining strategies where courts and health systems could collaboratively address SDH with women Opioid Intervention Court participants.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110635
Katie M. Edwards ◽  
Skyler L. Hopfauf ◽  
Briana R. Simon ◽  
Emily A. Waterman ◽  
Victoria L. Banyard

Sexual and related forms of violence among middle and high school students are pervasive public health issues, and thus, there is a growing emphasis on the development and evaluation of sexual violence prevention efforts for youth. Caregivers such as parents are important partners in this work as they can facilitate youths’ involvement (e.g., give them permission to participate, provide instrumental support such as rides), but their perception of their youth’s involvement in sexual violence prevention efforts is largely unexplored. The current paper examined caregivers’ perceptions of their teens’ participation in a community-wide, out-of-school, youth-led sexual violence prevention initiative. Some caregivers of youth who were involved in the initiative ( N = 19; 79.9% White; 21.1% Native American) responded to closed- and open-ended questions about what their teen had talked to them about in relation to the initiative, why their teen participated in the initiative, and how involvement impacted their teen. Furthermore, caregivers who attended events themselves responded to questions about what they learned, what they liked best, and what they liked least. Over half of caregivers said that their teens talked to them about bystander intervention, social emotional skills, and what constitutes sexual violence. Perceptions of the initiative were largely positive both in terms of what the teen learned at part of the programming and in caregivers’ own experience participating. These results are promising for the role of caregivers in partners in prevention.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110551
Tiffany L. Marcantonio ◽  
James Weese ◽  
Malachi Willis

Public awareness of sexual assault and initiatives aimed at preventing sexual assault continue to increase over the years. However, whether rates of sexual assault have diminished because of such cultural shifts remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to assess if rates of sexual assault (i.e., forced sex) have changed over the past 18 years for adolescent girls and boys as well as potential differences across racial/ethnic identities. Using nationally representative data from the Youth Risk Behavioral Surveillance Survey from 2001 to 2019, we conducted logistic regressions to assess rates of experiences of forced sex by sex and by sex and racial/ethnic identity, while accounting for grade level. Participants included 135,837 high school students. From 2001 to 2019, rates of forced sex maintained for girls; however, there was a decrease over time for boys. For girls, there were inconsistent differences in rates of forced sex by racial/ethnic identities. However, boys who identified as Black, Hispanic, Multi-Racial, and Other Race/Ethnicity were at higher risk to report forced sex than their White peers, until 2015; only Other Race/Ethnicity was at higher risk in 2019. As girls and boys aged, the risk of forced sex increased. Despite prevention efforts, rates of forced sex did not decrease from 2001 to 2019 for adolescent girls disregarding race/ethnicity, and for racial/ethnic minority boys. That rates of forced sex continue to be high is problematic as experiencing sexual assault at an earlier age is associated with myriad consequences. Further, results suggest current prevention initiatives may be inadequate at addressing risk factors for forced sex, and more broadly, sexual assault. Moving forward, researchers and educators may want to re-evaluate the strategies used to address and measure sexual assault experiences.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110642
Natasha F. De Veauuse Brown ◽  
Ashley E. N. Watson

Sexual homicide (SH) is the most severe outcome of sexual violence and disproportionately affects women. While SH is rare (<1% in the U.S.) and gravely understudied, it is among the most violent, feared, and well publicized forms of murder. Thus, examining predictors is pertinent to identifying targets for prevention and response efforts. Secondary analysis of 2015–2018 National Violent Death Reporting System data on 6461 female homicide victims age 20–64 was conducted to determine if SH represents a unique killing characterized by specific offender, victim, and incident profiles. Law enforcement and coroner/medical examiner narratives were reviewed to identify cases with sexual elements ( N=324). Logistic regression estimated odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals. Findings highlight important differences between SH and non-SH. SH victims were more likely to be single (AOR=1.7, p=.006), have a substance abuse problem (AOR=1.4, p=.04), or engaged in prostitution (AOR=10.4, p<.001). SH suspects were more likely to be male (AOR=2.5, p=.04), use an illicit substance in the preceding hours (AOR=1.6, p=.03), or had recent contact with police (AOR=1.6, p=.01). SH was more likely to occur in a hotel/motel (AOR=3.0, p=.002), by asphyxiation (AOR =13.38, p<.001), be perpetrated against an acquaintance (AOR=1.64, p=.007), or be precipitated by another serious crime (AOR=2.1, p<.001). Findings advance our understanding of SH victim, suspect, and incident profiles, which can help to better inform police/investigative practices and crime prevention strategies/interventions as well as to improve how SH cases are managed in correctional programs for offenders who have the opportunity for release back into society.

2022 ◽  
pp. 088626052110665
Sarah Dokkedahl ◽  
Trine Rønde Kristensen ◽  
Ask Elklit

Background: To protect women from Intimate partner violence (IPV), women’s shelters should not only provide emergency safety from IPV exposure, but also prolonged support that empowers women to build a life free from violence. The present study aims to investigate individual symptom development in association with residency at a women’s shelter. Method: Data were collected at four different timepoints, that is, enrolment (T1, N = 150), 3-months residency (T2, = 110), 6-months residency (T3, N = 68) and after relocation (T4, N = 63). Women were included from four Danish women’s shelters. The International Trauma Questionnaire (ITQ) was applied to test for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Complex-PTSD (C-PTSD) at all timepoints. A paired sample t-test was used to test the mean symptom development, and a Latent Class Growth Analysis (LCGA) was applied to test for different classes of PTSD-trajectories. Logistic regression was applied to predict class membership from shelter-related variables and symptom severity, that is, length of residency, psychological counselling, revictimization and key symptoms of C-PTSD. Results: The prevalence of PTSD (31%) and C-PTSD (37.9%) was high at enrolment. Although t-tests suggested a significant decline in symptoms at follow-up, the LCGA revealed different classes of symptom development. The two-class model was found to be the best representation of data with low-symptom- and high-symptom profiles, respectively. Overall, the largest decline in symptoms occurred within the first 3 months of residency. Revictimization was high and was further found to predict class membership. However, when included in a multiple regression only symptom severity predicted the high-symptoms profile class. Discussion: Psychological treatment focussing on PTSD and C-PTSD is important for the women’s future well-being and safety. Reports on revictimization was alarmingly high, which emphasises a continuing need to protect women from psychological violence within the shelters. These findings should be replicated in larger samples before we can draw any conclusion.

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