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CDC report on intimate partner violence in the US explores patterns of victimization and impact

Blog post

On February 26, 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) releases,Intimate Partner Violence in the United States — 2010, describing the prevalence and context of intimate partner violence (IPV) victimization using data from the 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS). Findings discuss IPV victimization, frequency, severity, patterns, need for services, and impacts to more fully convey this public health burden. Overall, the findings confirm that prevention should start early and target groups most at risk.

The report shows younger adults, racial/ethnic minorities, those with lower incomes, and those who have had recent food or housing insecurity experience higher rates of IPV. While many men experience IPV, women are disproportionately affected.

Prevention of IPV must begin at an early age before unhealthy relationship patterns are established and focus on those at greatest risk.

Specific findings include:

  • IPV victimization begins early with nearly 70% of female victims and nearly 54% of male victims having experienced IPV prior to age 25. 
  • Women were more likely than men to experience multiple forms of intimate partner violence both across the life span and within individual violent relationships.
  • Women and men who experienced food or housing insecurity in the past 12 months were more likely to report rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner compared to those who did not experience these problems.  
  • More than 1 in 3 female victims (36.4%) and more than 1 in 7 male victims (15.6%) of IPV reported needing at least one type of health-related service in response to victimization.
  • Black non-Hispanic women (43.7%) and multiracial non-Hispanic women (53.8%) had a significantly higher lifetime prevalence of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner compared to other racial/ethnic minorities.

By influencing relationship behaviors early through dating violence prevention programs, it is possible to promote healthy behaviors and patterns that can be carried into adulthood. NISVS provides data essential to informing IPV prevention efforts and providing services and resources to those victimized.

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