In Michigan, the level of domestic violence was flat in the early days of the pandemic, but abuse was exacerbated.

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At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, media reports warned of a surge in domestic violence.

The overall prevalence of domestic violence In Michigan, survivors of intimate partner violence experienced new, more frequent, or more serious violence during the early months of the pandemic, according to a University of Michigan study.

From June to August 2020, UM researchers found 1,169 University of Michigan women and transgender / non-binary individuals with varying morbidity, severity, and intimate violence. I investigated the correlation.

Approximately one in seven women and trans / non-binary people at the University of Michigan experienced violence by intimate partners, similar to pre-pandemic levels, while one in ten experienced violence during that period. I have experienced new, more frequent, or more serious violence. Professor at UM Nursing School and Faculty of Public Health.

The groups most likely to experience new, worse, or more frequent intimate violence were those who were financially vulnerable or insecure. Transgender and non-binary people; people who live in a household with 6 or more people. Also, key workers were twice as likely to experience new or worse violence, while one-third of pregnant women and one-quarter of households with infants were new or worse. I experienced violence.

Also, those who have been tested for COVID are more likely to experience new or more serious violence, and 86% of those who test positive in the early weeks of the pandemic are new or more serious. I experienced violence.

“There is clearly some interaction between this COVID pandemic and this pandemic of intimate violence,” Peitzmeier said.

The findings were shared in December 2020 with several state agencies and governors’ offices throughout Michigan, as well as several universities and major hospitals.

Lisa Fedina, an assistant professor at Peitzmeier and her research partner UM School of Social Work, said the results appear to be in line with reports from media and advocates of domestic violence.

“People before the pandemic experienced low levels of abuse and didn’t have to contact the hotline or ask for service, but they became more serious during the pandemic,” Peitzmeier said. Says. “In the field, service providers believe that the needs are increasing, even if the number of people experiencing abuse has not increased overall. At the same time, the situation is worsening for many survivors. . “

Shouldn’t the overall prevalence increase if more people report new violence? This is not always the case. People who have previously experienced violence may be experiencing violence from new people. PartnerShe said.

Also, about 3% of respondents began to experience violence during the pandemic, while 3% stopped experiencing violence during the same period. Researchers don’t know why. It may be related to the cyclical nature of domestic violence. Alternatively, the abuser and victim may not be living together and the abuser may not have access to the victim during the blockade.

Patzmeier said the nuances of the study are difficult to explain, and some scholars and advocates of domestic violence have overemphasized or overemphasized the effects of domestic violence in the state. I think that

“Looking at these results, it is important to remember that even if the prevalence of women experiencing domestic violence and transgender does not increase, there is one in ten. woman More serious or increasing transgender people in the country abuse“Patesmeier said.

Peitzmeier suggests that policies such as evictions and rental and childcare subsidies, prenatal and pediatric clinics and COVID testing sites to distribute information and referrals to domestic violence services may help. Did.

Fedina said there are many things that can be done to help survivors, starting with believing and listening.

“We can donate time, money, or other resources to local organizations servicing survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. Pandemic The need for service is only increasing. “

“(Also) we need a parliament to prioritize the 2021 Violence Against Women Reapproval Act to give survivors access to stable housing and other important financial support. Contact us and encourage us to support this important bill to protect and save survivors. We are alive. ”

Domestic Violence Survivor Risk of Elder Abuse

For more information:
Sarah M. Peitzmeier et al, Increasing Intimate Partner Violence in COVID-19: Prevalence and Correlation, Interpersonal Violence Journal (2021). DOI: 10.1177 / 08862605211052586

Quote: In Michigan, the level of domestic violence was flat during the early pandemic, but abuse was exacerbated (February 8, 2022). .html

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In Michigan, the level of domestic violence was flat in the early days of the pandemic, but abuse was exacerbated.

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