The impact of children on legal actions taken by women victims of intimate partnr violence

Author(s)Rhodes, Karin Verlaine, Melissa E Dichter, Catheriine L Kothari, Steven C Marcus and Catherine Cerulli
Title The impact of children on legal actions taken by women victims of intimate partner violence
Source Journal of Family Violence,2011, Vol 26, pp355-364
Date 2011
Document type Journal article 
Coverage USA
Summary The main aim of this study was to examine the extent to which the decisions of victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) regarding legal actions were impacted by having children. For the study data was abstracted from the databases of the police, prosecutor, criminal court and civil court over a four year period, relating to adult women who identified as IPV victims through police charging requests. The data allowed further exploration of specific variables such as whether or not the victim had children in common with the defendant, whether or not children were present in the particular IPV incident and whether a referral had been made to the Child Protection Services. It was found that having children was associated with an increase in victims participating in both criminal and civil interventions, through pursuing protective orders. The authors suggest further research using qualitative interviews with victims and the community is needed to understand the depth of emotion and importance women place on their decisions, that are related to protecting their children.
Keywords Domestic violence; children; protection orders; IPV; Intimate partner violence; prosecution
Topic Domestic violence