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An Online Resource Library on Gender-Based Violence.

Extent, Nature, and Consequences of Intimate Partner Violence

General Material

As described in its Executive Summary, this report "presents findings from the National Violence Against Women (NVAW) Survey on the extent, nature, and consequences of intimate partner violence in the United States. . . . The survey consists of telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 8,000 U.S. women and 8,000 U.S. men about their experiences with intimate partner violence. The survey compares victimization rates among women and men, specific racial groups, Hispanics and non-Hispanics, and same-sex and opposite-sex cohabitants. It also examines risk factors associated with intimate partner violence, the rate of injury among rape and physical assault victims, injured victims' use of medical services, and victims' involvement with the justice system."

Report sections also cover: its definition of intimate partner violence, comparisons with prior estimates and disparities in survey findings, and policy implications. The report includes 20 Exhibits showing distributions, averages, and breakdowns by characteristics.

Highlighted findings include:

  • Nearly 25% of women and 7.5% of men surveyed said they were raped and/or physically assaulted by a current or former spouse, cohabiting partner, or date at some point in their lifetime.
  • Almost 5% of surveyed women and 0.6% percent of surveyed men reported being stalked by a current or former spouse, cohabiting partner, or date at some time in their lifetime.
  • Women experience more intimate partner violence and more chronic and injurious physical assaults during that intimate partner violence than men do. Violence perpetrated against women by intimates is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior.
  • Rates of intimate partner violence vary significantly among women of diverse racial backgrounds. Asian/Pacific Islander women and men tend to report lower rates of intimate partner violence than do women and men from other minority backgrounds, and African-American and American Indian/Alaska Native women and men report higher rates.
  • Women living with female intimate partners experience less intimate partner violence than women living with male intimate partners. (11% vs. 21.7%)
  • Men living with male intimate partners experience more intimate partner violence than do men who live with female intimate partners. (23% vs. 7.4%)
  • Most intimate partner victimizations are not reported to the police. Only approximately one-fifth of all rapes, one-quarter of all physical assaults, and one-half of all stalkings perpetrated against female respondents by intimates were reported to the police. Even fewer rapes, physical assaults, and stalkings perpetrated against male respondents by intimates were reported.

The research report was published July 2000 by the U.S. National Institute of Justice (Pub.No. NCJ181867) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.