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Domestic Violence Statistics

Between 11 and 42 million women experience serious assault by an intimate partner each year.

47% of men who beat their wives do so at least 3 times per year.3

Nearly 1 in 3 adult women experience at least 1 physical assault by a partner during adulthood.4

Only about one-seventh of all domestic assaults come to the attention of the police.5

Each year, an estimated 3.3 million children witness their mothers or female caretakers being abused.6

40-60% of men who abuse women also abuse children.7

Young women, between the ages of 16-24 in dating relationships experience the highest rate of domestic violence and sexual assault.8

An average of 28% of high school and college students experience dating violence at some point.9

26% of pregnant teens reported being physically abused by their boyfriends -- about half of them said the battering began or intensified after he learned of her pregnancy.10

Requests for emergency shelter by homeless families with children increased in 68% of US cities surveyed in 1999.11

57 % of homeless families identified domestic violence as a primary cause of homelessness.12

Between one- and two-thirds of welfare recipients reported having suffered domestic violence at some point in their adult lives; between 15 - 32% reported current domestic victimization.13

Black women experience intimate partner violence at a 35% higher rate than white women.14

A battered woman who is not a legal resident, or whose immigration status depends on her partner, is isolated by cultural dynamics which may prevent her from leaving her husband or seeking assistance from the legal system. These factors contribute to the higher incidence of abuse among immigrant women.15

While same-sex battering mirrors heterosexual battering both in type and prevalence, its victims receive fewer protections. Seven states define domestic violence in a way that excludes same-sex victims; 21 states have sodomy laws that may require same-sex victims to confess to a crime in order to prove they are in a domestic relationship.16

1Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report: Violence Against Women: Estimates from the Redesigned Survey (NCJ-154348) August 1995, p. 3.

2American Psychological Association; Violence and the Family: Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family (1996), p. 10.

3AMA Diagnostic & Treatment Guidelines on Domestic Violence, SEC: 94-677:3M:9/94 (1994).

4American Psychological Association; Violence and the Family Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family (1996), p. 10.

5Florida Governor's Task Force on Domestic and Sexual Violence, Florida Mortality Review Project, 1997, p. 3.

6American Psychological Association, Violence and the Family: Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family (1996), p. 11.

7American Psychological Association, Violence and the Family: Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family (1996), p. 80.

8Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report: Intimate Partner Violence. May, 2000.

9Brustin, S., Legal Response to Teen Dating Violence, Family Law Quarterly, vol. 29, no. 2, 331 (Summer 1995) (citing Levy, In Love & In Danger: a teen's guide to breaking free of an abusive relationship, 1993).

10Brustin, S., Legal Response to Teen Dating Violence, Family Law Quarterly, vol. 29, no. 2, 333-334 (Summer 1995) (citing Worcester, A More Hidden Crime: Adolescent Battered Women, The Network News, July/Aug., National Women's Health Network 1993).

11The United States Conference of Mayors, A Status Report on Hunger and Homelessness in America's Cities: 1999, December 1999, p39.

12The United States Conference of Mayors, A Status Report on Hunger and Homelessness in America's Cities: 1999, December 1999, p. 94.

13Raphael & Tolman, Trapped by Poverty, Trapped by Abuse: New Evidence Documenting the Relationship Between Domestic Violence and Welfare, p. 21 (1997).

14Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report: Intimate Partner Violence. May, 2000 .

15Orloff et al., With No Place to Turn: Improving Advocacy for Battered Immigrant Women, Family Law Quarterly, vol. 29, no. 2, 313 (Summer 1995).

16Barnes, It's Just a Quarrel', American Bar Association Journal, February 1998, p. 24.

 

 



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