Intimate Partner Violence During COVID-19: Demographic and Economic Correlates of Survivor Experiences

Leila Wood, Elizabeth Baumler, Dixie Hairston, Barbie Brashear, Jeff R. Temple

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To extend our understanding of intimate partner violence (IPV) during the COVID-19 pandemic, we examined socioecological correlates of IPV, as well as rates of victimization. We assessed physical IPV, sexual IPV, psychological IPV, reproductive coercion, coercive labor, and coercive control. Method:A total of 374 recent survivors of IPV were recruited in partnership with IPV and social service agencies in Southeast Texas. Participants were asked about their experiences with IPV, COVID-19, and economic situation during the first year of the pandemic (March 2020–December 2020). Data were collected in December 2020. The sample was racially and ethnically diverse and primarily female-identified (77%). Statistical analyses included descriptive, analysis of variance, t tests, and chi-square test. Results: Among participants, rates of past-year IPV were high, with 77.3% reporting physical victimization and 94.7% reporting psychological abuse victimization. A majority (55.5%) of participants, self-reported violence increases since the pandemic began. Older (46+) and Black participants reported higher rates of IPV, including coercive control. Reported IPV increases since COVID was significantly associated with homelessness during COVID-19, lower income, and physical IPV, psychological IPV, economic IPV, along with coercive control and coerced labor by a partner. Conclusions: We found that COVID-19-related IPV increases were associated with IPV victimization types and economic factors, including low income and homelessness. Results also confirm a “dual pandemic” perspective, underscoring the heightened risk for IPV for Black, middle age, and older survivors. These findings highlight the need for a strong and sustained community response to address potential outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPsychology of Violence
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • coercive control
  • COVID-19
  • domestic violence
  • homelessness
  • intimate partner violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology

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