STUDY: Domestic Violence Among LGBT Community On The Rise

A new report by The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, released today, reveals a significant increase in intimate partner violence among the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected community.

According to the Intimate Partner Violence in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and HIV-Affected (LGBTQH) Communities in the United States in 2011 report:

In 2011, NCAVP documented 19 intimate partner violence (IPV) homicides, the highest yearly total ever recorded by the coalition and more than three times the 6 documented homicides in 2010. Of the 19 homicide victims, a majority (63.2%) of IPV homicide victims were men, a significant shift from 2010 when 66.7% of LGBTQH homicide victims identified as women.

“This year’s report indicates that men are disproportionately victims of homicide in incidents of intimate partner violence,” said Gary Heath, Domestic Violence Program Coordinator at Ohio’s Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization.  “NCAVP’s report shows that the societal understanding of IPV survivors needs to expand to include gay men.”

Additionally the report showed that LGBTQH people under 30 are nearly twice as likely to experience physical violence, while LGBTQH people of color under 30 are nearly 4 times as likely.

The NCAVP received 22.2% fewer reports of intimate partner violence than in 2010 due to a 42.7% decrease in reports from the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, which lost a significant amount of its funding and staff.  Even excluding LAGLC’s reports, however, there was still an 18.3% increase in reports of LGBTQH intimate partner violence nationwide.

The report also outlined ways to combat intimate partner violence:

  • Pass an LGBTQ-inclusive Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that protects survivors from service discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and recognizes LGBTQ communities as under-served.
  • Fund LGBTQH intimate partner violence prevention initiatives, particularly for youth and young adults.
  • Support LGBTQH training and technical assistance programs to increase the cultural competency of all victim service providers.
  • Increase local, state, and national funding to LGBTQH-specific anti-violence programs, particularly for survivor-led initiatives.
  • Increase research and documentation of LGBTQH intimate partner violence.

The full report can be downloaded here.