Disabled women and domestic violence: Making the links, a national UK study

Author(s) Hague, Gail, Ravi Thiara and Audrey Mullender
Title Disabled women and domestic violence: Making the links, a national UK study
Source Psychiatry, Psychology and Law,February 2011, Volume 18, No. 1, pp117-136
Date 2011
Document type Journal article
Coverage United Kingdom
Summary This was the first national study in the United Kingdom of disability and domestic violence. It is noted that the authors use the term 'disabled' rather than 'with a disability' in this article. There were three stages in the study. The first stage consisted of national surveys and consultations with local domestic violence organisations and local disabled people's organisations. In the second stage in depth interviews were conducted with 30 abused disabled women with a range of impairments and from diverse backgrounds. In the third stage examples of good practice were identified and explored including four detailed case studies of organisations with elements of best practice. It was found that physical violence, sometimes severe, was experienced by all the women interviewed. The experience of women who were abused by their carer was explored in depth, with the authors examining issues of neglect, isolation and increased vulnerability and reinforcement of control. All the women interviewed agreed that being disabled made the abuse worse and made it more difficult to get away from the violence. The authors make a number of recommendations for future research and service delivery.
Keywords Disabled women; disability; domestic violence; abuse; carers

Disability; domestic violence