-For a fourth year in a row cisgender men killed by their male partners were most impacted by IPV homicide
-LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities of color, bisexual survivors, transgender communities, and cisgender male survivors were uniquely and disproportionately impacted by IPV
-LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors on public assistance were more likely to face physical violence and injury as a result of IPV
-A higher percentage of LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors of intimate partner violence attempted to access the police, courts, and domestic violence shelters for support compared to previous years
NATIONALToday the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs ( NCAVP ) released its report Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Intimate Partner Violence in 2014. For this report - the most comprehensive of its kind - NCAVP collected data concerning intimate partner violence ( IPV ) within LGBTQ and HIV-affected relationships from 16 anti-violence programs in 13 states across the country, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, Texas and Vermont.
In 2014, NCAVP programs received 2,166 reports of IPV, a decrease of nearly 20% from the 2,697 reports received in 2013. This decrease between 2013 and 2014 follows an increase between 2012 and 2013, and variation in the total number of reports received each year are a normal occurrence from year to year. Several contributing NCAVP member programs which saw a decrease attributed the decrease in their area to less visibility for their organization due to staffing changes, including OutFront Minnesota, the New York City Anti-Violence Project, and Community United Against Violence in San Francisco. "While NCAVP saw a decrease in reports in 2014, this data remains some of the most comprehensive data available and includes reports of LGBTQ and HIV-affected IPV which may not have been reported to the police," said Beverly Tillery from the New York City Anti-Violence Project. "The need to bring visibility and resources to the experiences and needs of LGBTQ survivors of IPV remains a critical issue facing our country."
NCAVP documented 15 IPV homicides in 2014. This is down 29% from 21 IPV homicides in 2013. For a fourth year in a row, cisgender men were disproportionately affected by IPV homicide. Of the 15 homicides documented in 2014, 8 ( 53% ) of the victims were cisgender men, 7 of whom were killed by current or former male partners. In 2014, 47% of all reported IPV homicide victims were cisgender men killed by their male partners. "We know from the National Intimate Partner Violence Survey ( NISVS ) by the Centers for Disease Control that lesbians, gay men, and bisexual people experience IPV at the same or higher rates as non-LGB people, and actual homicide numbers are likely much higher," said Vanessa Volz from Sojourner House in Providence, Rhode Island. "The lack of awareness and visibility in the media — and in society generally — around fatal intimate partner violence as it affects LGBTQ and HIV-affected people needs to change."
Disproportionate Experiences of Violence
People of Color Survivors
For the fourth year in a row, LGBTQ and HIV-affected people of color made up the majority ( 51% ) of IPV survivors. Specifically, LGBTQ Black/African American survivors were 1.89 times more likely to experience physical violence within IPV when compared to all non-black survivors. Latin@ survivors were 1.59 times more likely to experience threats by their partners when compared to all non-Latin@ survivors. "LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors of color often face racism along with homophobia, biphobia and transphobia when interacting with first responders or attempting to access supportive services," said Lynne Sprague from Survivors Organizing for Liberation in Colorado. "It is imperative that responses to LGBTQ and HIV-affected intimate partner violence survivors of color address not just institutional anti-LGBTQ and HIV bias - but also racism."
The 2014 report found that transgender survivors were 1.98 times more likely to experience IPV in public areas, and 3.39 times more likely to experience discrimination than people who did not identify as transgender. "Transgender people face increased risk of violence for many reasons, including transphobia and discrimination on the basis of gender identity," said Mieko Failey, from the Los Angeles LGBT Center. "It is critical that we address the barriers transgender survivors experience in accessing resources and provide supportive programs that explicitly include the transgender community," added Susan Holt, also from the Los Angeles LGBT Center.
The 2014 report found that for a second year in a row, bisexual survivors were more likely to experience sexual violence within IPV. People who identified as bisexual were 2.02 times more likely to experience sexual violence than people who did not identify as bisexual. NCAVP's 2014 data reinforces the findings of the NISVS. The NISVS report revealed that 61% of bisexual women and 37% of bisexual men experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking in their lifetimes within IPV. "Research indicates that bisexual survivors are impacted by intimate partner violence in a way that is both distinct and concerning," said Eva Wood from OutFront Minnesota. "Comprehensive and inclusive information on sexual orientation is necessary in data collection, research studies and elsewhere so that we can better understand the unique ways that bisexual survivors are impacted by IPV and their experiences in accessing care."
Undocumented Transgender Survivors
The 2014 report showed that undocumented transgender survivors were more likely to experience discrimination and harassment. Undocumented transgender survivors were 3.83 times more likely to experience discrimination, and 1.78 times more likely to experience harassment than people who do not identify as transgender and undocumented. "Undocumented transgender survivors are at a unique risk for IPV because abusive partners can threaten them with their immigration status, and survivors may be reluctant to seek support for fear of revealing their immigration status to law enforcement and immigration authorities," said Lidia Salazar from Community United Against Violence in San Francisco. "Now is the time to enact compassionate, comprehensive immigration reform to reduce barriers for LGBTQ and HIV-affected immigrant survivors of IPV."
LGBTQ Survivors and Public Assistance
For the first time, NCAVP collected data on experiences of LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors who are on public assistance in an effort to expand current research to analyze the economic impacts of violence and relationship between socio-economic status and violence. The 2014 report found that LGBTQ survivors of color were 3.34 times more likely to be on public assistance than people who do not identify as LGBTQ people of color, and transgender women of color were 8.43 times more likely to be on public assistancethan people who did not identify as transgender women of color. Additionally, survivors on public assistance in 2014 were 3.13 times more likely to experience physical violence and 5.71 times more likely to be injured than survivors who were not on public assistance. "Economic violence is often a central form of abuse within IPV, and survivors who face societal economic vulnerabilities may be more vulnerable to economic abuse and exploitation from their abusive partners," said Chai Jindasurat from the New York City Anti-Violence Project. "Policymakers and funders should fund economic empowerment programs targeted at LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities, particularly LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities of color, transgender communities, immigrant communities, and low-income communities."
NCAVP's 2014 report found that a higher percentage of survivors attempted to access formal systems and services, and when they did, example, in 2014 a higher percentage of LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors ( 24% ) sought orders of protection compared to 2013 ( 17% ). Of those orders of protection, 85% were granted in 2014 compared to 58% in 2013. With regard to shelter services,15% of survivors sought shelter access in 2014, compared to 6% in 2013. Finally, the report revealed that 55% of survivors provided information about police engagement reported their experience of IPV to the police in 2014, a substantial increase from 2013, when 37% of survivors reported to police. "The fact that LGBTQ and HIV-affected people were more likely to access systems and services in 2014 is encouraging, and speaks to the work of LGBTQ organizations, and others, to reform violence response systems and expand the national discourse on intimate partner violence," said Aaron Eckhardt from BRAVO in Ohio, "As we begin to reach a collective understanding that anyone can experience IPV in their relationships, systems and services will have to continue to evolve to support these survivors."
The report includes specific policy recommendations, including the following key recommendations related to the findings highlighted above. There are further recommendations published in the full report.
Policymakers should ensure that the federal government collects comprehensive and inclusive information on sexual orientation and gender identity, whenever demographic data is requested in studies, surveys, and research, including IPV.
Policymakers, researchers and advocates should ensure that LGBTQ survivors are included in all prevention assessments, including homicide and lethality assessments, and that coordinated community responses include specific and targeted programming for LGBTQ survivors.
Policymakers and funders should fund LGBTQ and HIV-affected specific IPV prevention initiatives.
Policymakers and funders should fund economic empowerment programs targeted at LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities, particularly LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities of color, transgender communities, immigrant communities, and low-income communities.
Policymakers should enact compassionate, comprehensive immigration reform to reduce barriers for LGBTQ and HIV-affected immigrant survivors of IPV.
NCAVP works to prevent, respond to, and end all forms of violence against and within lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer ( LGBTQ ), and HIV-affected communities. NCAVP is a national coalition of 53 local member programs and affiliate organizations in 25 states, Canada, and Washington DC, who create systemic and social change. We strive to increase power, safety, and resources through data analysis, policy advocacy, education, and technical assistance.
NCAVP is coordinated by the New York City Anti-Violence Project.
Contributors and Regional Media Contacts
BRAVO, Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization ( Columbus, OH )
Contact: Aaron Eckhardt, MSW ( 614 ) 294-7867
Center on Halsted Anti-Violence Project ( Chicago, IL )
Contact: Jessica Punzo, ( 773 ) 661.0740
Community United Against Violence ( San Francisco, CA )
Contact: Essex Lordes, ( 415 ) 777-5500
Equality Michigan ( Detroit, MI )
Contact: Yvonne Siferd, Esq. ( 313 ) 537-7000 x114
Fenway Community Health Violence Recovery Program ( Boston, MA )
Contact: Chris Viveiros, ( 617 ) 927-6342
Kansas City Anti-Violence Project ( Kansas City, MO )
Contact: Justin Shaw, ( 816 ) 561-2755 x200
L.A. LGBT Center Anti-Violence Project ( Los Angeles, CA )
Contact: Susan Holt, PsyD, LMFT, CCDVCor Mieko Failey, Esq. ( 323 ) 993-7645
firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com .
Montrose Counseling Center ( Houston, TX )
Contact: Sally Huffer, ( 713 ) 529-0037 x324
New York City Anti-Violence Project ( New York, NY )
Contact: Sue Yacka, ( 212 ) 714-1184
Out.Front Minnesota ( Minneapolis, MN )
Contact: Monica Meyer ( 612 ) 822.0127 x.7665, firstname.lastname@example.org
or Eva C. Wood ( 612 ) 822-0127 ext. 7656, email@example.com .
SafeSpace Program @ Pride Center of Vermont ( formerly RU12? Community Center ) ( Winooski, VT )
Contact: Kim Fountain, PhD, ( 802 ) 860-7812
Sojourner House ( Providence, RI )
Contact: Vanessa Volz, J.D., ( 401 ) 861-6191 x 113
SOL ( Previously known as Colorado Anti-Violence Program )( Denver, CO )
Contact: Lynne Sprague, ( 303 ) 8395204 X2
The Network/La Red ( Boston, MA )
Contact:Beverly Eugene, ( 617 ) 695-0877
Wingspan Anti-Violence Programs ( Tucson, AZ )
Contact: Patrick Farr, ( 520 ) 547-6113