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An Online Resource Library on Gender-Based Violence.

Mental Health and Substance Use Coercion Surveys

General Material
Published Date
March, 2014

This report describes two surveys of callers to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, one on mental health coercion and the other on substance use coercion. The surveys showed that both types of abuse were prevalent among hotline callers. Mental health coercion involves issues such as an abuser threatening to tell authorities that a victim is “crazy,” an abuser trying to manipulate a victim into questioning her own mental health, and an abuser preventing a victim from accessing mental health treatment. Substance abuse coercion involves issues such as an abuser pressuring or forcing a victim to use alcohol or drugs, an abuser threatening to report a victim’s substance use to authorities as a manipulation tactic, and an abuser preventing a victim from accessing substance abuse treatment. The report explains that mental health and substance abuse practitioners and law enforcement and legal professionals need to be aware of these issues in order to work effectively with victims who have undergone these types of coercion.