The Evidence Hour: Teen Dating Violence Help-Seeking Intentions and Behaviors Among Ethnically and Racially Diverse Youth
Teen dating violence (TDV) affects millions of youths in the United States and globally each year. TDV has been associated with negative physical health and mental health outcomes. Yet, the prevalence of help-seeking among youth who have experience TDV is fairly low. Youth from diverse racial and ethnic groups are particularly vulnerable to TDV victimization, but are still underrepresented in TDV research. While the past decade has witnessed an increased interest from researchers to understand how the phenomenon of TDV manifests among ethnically and racially diverse populations, there is still a gap in the literature that explores the racial and ethnic differences in the help-seeking intentions and behaviors of youth.
• To assess the state of the empirical literature on dating violence and help-seeking intentions and behaviors among racially
and ethnically diverse youth between the ages of 12 and 19.
• To examine the research gaps that remain in the scientific literature.
• To discuss promising actions that researchers, practitioners and advocates can take to fill those gaps and advance science and
practice in the field of TDV.
Diana M. Padilla-Medina, PhD, LMSW, is an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at Arlington School of Social Work. She is also a 2018-2019 Fulbright Scholar. Diana’s current research work focuses on sexual and intimate partner violence among adolescents and adults, particularly among Latinos.
Carolina Vélez-Grau, PhD, LCSW, is a Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellow/Assistant Professor at the NYU Silver School of Social Work. Her research focuses on suicide prevention and access to mental health services among ethnocultural minoritized youth, particularly Latinx and Black teens.
The Evidence Hour: Housing Stress and Child Maltreatment examines at the results of a recent systematic review of studies on this topic, revealing what we know about this connection and where more research is needed. This information is important to all who are working for systemic change to prevent family violence as well as those striving to help victims and families.
Caroline Chandler is currently a doctoral candidate in the Department of Maternal and Child Health at the UNC Gillings School of Public Health, and her dissertation research focuses on the association between concrete and clinical service receipt and well-being among infants and toddlers who are referred to Child Protective Services. Caroline is also engaged in participatory research on adolescent mental health, resilience, and equity with youth in Southeast Raleigh. She is a member of the North Carolina Infant and Young Child Mental Health Association Board of Directors and volunteers as a Guardian ad Litem, advocating for children’s best interests in court.
Tien Ung works to help individuals and organizations translate and apply relevant research, build knowledge, and generate culturally authentic evidence to improve outcomes for families impacted by adversity and trauma. At Futures Without Violence, Tien collaborates with colleagues and external partners to design practice, program, and policy solutions by integrating community wisdom, lived experience, and 21st-century science. Tien draws from 25+ years of experience as a child protection expert, trauma therapist, social work educator, community-based researcher, and systems consultant. She has worked across sectors—including child welfare, criminal justice/family law, schools, rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, and child and family trauma clinics. Tien is a licensed clinical social worker and has a Ph.D. in Social Work.
This Center for Victim Research (CVR) webinar examines the impact of COVID-19 on domestic violence survivors in Harris County, Texas. Researcher and practitioner presenters share the results of the Harris County Health and Relationship Study, a collaborative partnership to examine the impact and needs of domestic violence survivors in Harris County (Houston) Texas. Over 400 survivors were surveyed and 48 follow-up interviews were conducted about their experiences, mental health, needs, and safety strategies before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Study findings include the impact of COVID-19 lockdowns on violence experiences; survivor community and social support needs; and safety approaches. This presentation focuses on study findings and implications for domestic violence and other community-related services. A copy of the report and executive summary are available at https://www.hcdvcc.org/hchrstudy/. Presenters:
Barbie Brashear is the Executive Director for the Harris County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council, a non-profit organization that works to coordinate a community response to domestic violence in Harris County, Texas. She has worked in the domestic and sexual violence field for 26 years and has provided leadership to sexual assault programs, domestic violence programs, and long-term housing programs for over 20 years.
Abeer Monem is the Director of Director of Housing and Innovative Services for the Harris County Domestic Violence Coordinating Council. She has more than 25 years of experience working with survivors of intimate partner and family violence.
Leila Wood is an assistant professor and the Director of Evaluation at the Center for Violence Prevention Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, at The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). Dr. Wood’s program of research focuses on community-based intimate partner violence and sexual assault intervention and prevention efforts, including college campuses.
This webinar presents findings from the Urban Institute’s Evaluation of In-prison Programming: Addressing Prior Trauma and Victimization, funded by the National Institute of Justice. Researchers from Urban and the Center for Effective Public Policy present findings from its national scan of Practice, including the extent to which correctional institutions address victimization and trauma among incarcerated women and seek to advance trauma-informed practices. Specifically, the presenters elaborate on the services and programming state Departments of Correction offer to address trauma and victimization, including community partnerships with organizations, and agencies that work with women who have experienced victimization and trauma, and the challenges associated with providing such services. The webinar concludes with recommendations.
This webinar focuses on the current evidence surrounding challenges faced by victims of mass violence and terrorism as well as challenges faced by first responders, government agencies, victim service providers, and others who respond to these events. CVR researchers Melanie Langness and Emily Tiry present findings from the CVR’s synthesis on mass violence and terrorism, including materials produced by researchers, practitioners, and organizations dedicated to responding to mass violence events. Guest speaker Kathryn M. Turman, former Assistant Director of the FBI Victim Services Division, provides practitioners’ observations from the field.
A panel of three keynote speakers share their work and recommendations for researching diverse victims’ experiences and perspectives on different systems and models of justice. Dr. West presents her decades of research on Black women’s experiences of domestic and sexual violence and treatment interventions from a social justice perspective. Dr. Hussemann shares her Perceptions of Justice project capturing voices of human trafficking survivors and their views on traditional, procedural, restorative, and transitional justice. Dr. McCoy presents her research on the victimization experiences of young men and boys of color and their perceptions of traditional and social justice. Attendees had the opportunity to ask questions of the experts and take part in small breakout discussions exploring the benefits, challenges, and policy implications of engaging in this research. CVR concludes the convening by sharing key resources to support researchers and practitioners in this work.
In this webinar, CVR researchers Storm Ervin and Erica Henderson presented findings from CVR’s synthesis on elder abuse, exploring a wide range of abusive behaviors and including materials produced by researchers, practitioners, and organizations dedicated to aging and elder abuse. Guest speaker, Mary Lynn Kasunic, from the Area Agency on Aging, Region One, described practitioners’ observations in the field and the nation’s first domestic violence shelter for older adults.
Chronic Diseases, Health Conditions, and Other Impacts Associated With Rape Victimization of U.S. Women
This webinar reviews findings from a recent study using a nationally representative sample of females to examine health outcomes and impacts associated with any lifetime experience of rape. The study included a separate examination of injury and health outcomes (including fear) resulting from any violence by a perpetrator of rape. The webinar includes information about the rate of reported physical injury, rate of infection from a sexually transmitted disease, and overall rate of impact as a result of violence by a rape perpetrator. It also addresses the adjusted odds that rape victims will experience asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, frequent headaches, chronic pain, difficulty sleeping, activity limitations, poor physical or mental health, and use of special equipment (e.g., wheelchair)—compared to non-victims. Presenters discuss the implications of these findings for prevention and response.
This webinar featured a new tool developed to measure service outcomes for human trafficking. This user-friendly, excel-based tool measures changes in feelings of safety, well-being, social connectedness, and self-sufficiency. The tool is applicable to diverse settings, relevant to programs serving minor and adult victims of sex and labor trafficking and is being made available to service providers at no cost.
The National Census of Victim Service Providers (NCVSP) is the first-ever effort to collect data from all victim service providers across the nation, providing characteristics of 12,196 victim service providers across all 50 states and Washington DC. This webinar provides a brief background about the goals and methodology of the NCVSP and discuss key findings and potential uses of the NCVSP data. Presenters will provide guidance in analyzing the NCVSP data, highlighting some of the data strengths and limitations.
The presenters discussed the results of their study that examined hate crime and bias victimization among Latino adults. Their findings suggest that rates of victimization are higher than what may be indicated by official report statistics or national level surveys. In addition, disclosure to formal help-seeking resources are notably low and variation in help-seeking may exist across gender, immigration status, and crime type. Understanding these trends is crucial in developing appropriate services for bias crime victims, and particularly for those victims from the Latino population.
This webinar focused on poly-victims, the subgroup of youth that endure the highest burden of victimization. It covered how it has been studied, how often it occurs, what we know about its adverse effects and what we can do to respond to the needs of this highly victimized group of children.
A Trauma-Informed Care Approach to Healthcare Providers’ Interactions with Families and Friends of Homicide Victims
The presenters discuss findings from their research with families and friends of homicide victims (FFHV) which focused on interactions with the healthcare system and healthcare providers in the aftermath of a loved one’s homicide. The research team held focus groups with FFHV and coded the qualitative data using the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s “Guiding Principles of Trauma-Informed Care” framework (2014). They discuss the findings, suggestions for healthcare providers’ interactions with patients who are FFHV, and the next steps for this project.
As our national understanding of child and youth trafficking has grown, so has the need for information regarding effective response. The issue of specialized residential placement is of particular interest to advocates and other service providers. Presenters joined in a researcher-practitioner partnership to examine policies, practices, and programming being implemented across the country to provide specialized services to trafficked youth within residential placement settings. They share the key components of a specialized child trafficking response that were identified in the course of this project, as well as recommendations for practice and research.
The EMPOWER© Program is one of two rigorous, multiyear demonstration projects funded by the National Institute of Justice to prevent the abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation of older adults in the community who are at risk for mistreatment. During the project’s recently completed Planning Phase, researchers at the Urban Institute worked closely with practitioners at the Area Agency on Aging, Region One, to develop and pretest an evidence-informed program to improve older adults’ physical, mental, social, and financial resilience.
Illinois HEALS is one of four state demonstration projects funded by the Office for Victims of Crime to link systems of care for children, youth, and families experiencing violence and victimization in their homes, schools, and communities. Researchers and policy advisors with Illinois HEALS (Illinois Helping Everyone Access Linked Systems) have worked collaboratively to identify strengths, opportunities, and challenges facing providers serving young victims and families. Presenters provide an overview of critical activities during the planning phase, interview findings, and the action plan, all of which can inform researchers and practitioners seeking to develop similar partnerships and those working to strengthen their response to young victims and their families.
Dr. Lynn Addington (American University) and Ericka Dixon (National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs) discuss the findings of Dr. Addington’s study, which examined reports of IPV experienced by LGB individuals with a particular emphasis on responses to these incidents including victim disclosure/help-seeking, need for services, and police response/arrest. This study relied on data captured by the Uniform Crime Reporting Program’s National Incident-Based Reporting System (2016) and the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (2010, General Population).
Florida’s Department of Children and Families (DCF) has been recording allegations of human trafficking in its data tracking system, SACWIS, since 2009, well ahead of many states. RTI International, an independent research institute, partnered with DCF in the largest study to date of human trafficking within a child welfare population. The study uses DCF data for all children with allegations of child abuse and neglect maltreatments between 2011 and 2017 — more than 1 million children. DCF’s Human Trafficking Regional Coordinator, Sue Aboul-hosn, and RTI’s Senior Health and Social Research Analyst, Deborah Gibbs, share what the data from 8,044 allegations of human trafficking, of which 90% relate to sexual exploitation, reveal about the characteristics of children with human trafficking allegations.
Law enforcement agencies around the country are looking to improve their victim response and community connections. Participants from the Chattanooga Police Department share their experience incorporating research and evaluation into their efforts to implement the Enhancing Law Enforcement Response to Victims (ELERV) strategy to inform their work and better meet their goals. ELERV is supported by a partnership between the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Office for Victims of Crime.
The experiences of victims of identity theft and fraud are under-researched, while the responses to their needs remain underdeveloped and have typically not yet been evaluated. CVR researchers Dr. Yasemin Irvin-Erickson and Ms. Alexandra Ricks present key findings from the first comprehensive review of national research and practice evidence on this topic.
Cybervictimization is a common but less frequently identified element of sexual and interpersonal violence. Dr. Shelly Clevenger will share her research interviewing survivors and their supporting family members to learn more about experiences of cyberfraud, cybersexual abuse, and cyberstalking. She will also share the action steps taken with victim service providers and other responders in response to this research. Dr. Clevenger will be joined by Kelsie Langheim-Frooman, Director of Client Services at Stepping Stones Rape Crisis Center in Bloomington, IL, who assisted with this research.
The presenters lead you through an exploration of the CVR’s features, including: engaging podcasts with experts in the field, comprehensive syntheses of research and practice evidence, the first-of-its-kind directory of victim researchers, an easily searchable library of the latest research materials, and technical assistance with literature searches and research design
Ada Pecos Melton, MPA; Rita Y. Martinez, BA; and DeeJay Chino, MPA present strategies for initiating active and meaningful involvement and input by tribal leaders, communities, and citizens.
The webinar focuses on a researcher’s role in:
1) Identifying tribal stakeholders and
2) Gaining perspective and input at varying levels, including government, community and citizens.
It will also present the possible roles and responsibilities of stakeholders to:
1) Review research proposals, designs, methods, and approaches;
2) Anticipate and resolve possible challenges;
3) Participate in analysis of findings and publications;
4) Assist with dissemination strategies; and
5) Utilization of research findings to inform tribal public policy, programs, and services
This webinar addresses the importance of clarifying your professional identity, creating a good fit for your professional home, valuing a teamwork mentality, and navigating promotion and tenure requirements as an interdisciplinary, community-engaged researcher. Participants also learn about resources and tools from the Center for Victim Research that can support them in their work.
Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funding can now be used to assist crime victims in securing safe and stable housing. This change is an important opportunity for crime victims, but has left VOCA administrators and victim service programs with questions about what can and should be funded. Dr. Cris M. Sullivan and Elizabeth Eastlund, LCSW share what they learned from a process evaluation of the experiences of California programs that used VOCA funds for the Domestic Violence Housing First model, which places victims of domestic violence into housing as quickly as possible after victimization.
Homicide co-victims are under-researched and, in many communities, inadequately served. CVR researchers Dr. Sara Bastomski and Ms. Marina Duane will present key findings from the first comprehensive review of national research and practice evidence on homicide co-victimization.
Dr. Ron Acierno and Dr. Melba Hernandez-Tejada discuss key findings from the National Elder Mistreatment Study, the first nationally representative study focused on elder abuse, and their recently released 8-year follow-up results. The webinar focuses on social support as key to protecting older adults and building resiliency after experiences of elder abuse.
A major goal of the Center for Victim Research is to develop a community of victim service providers and researchers to improve practice through the effective use of research and data. This webinar will focus on how data from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) can help inform the victim service community about victimization patterns and service needs among different groups in the population. The NCVS is the nation’s primary source of information on criminal victimization, representing the self-reported victimization experiences of survivors 12 and older across the United States. Though the NCVS data is publicly available, it is difficult for those without training to do their own analysis, including in pursuit of information not easily answered through annual NCVS reports (e.g., looking at victims and related needs intersectionally, considering multiple characteristics at once).
Presenters will share findings from the NCVS about who is at greatest risk for violence and the use of victim services. Special emphasis will be placed on issues of race, ethnicity, gender, age, poverty, access to services, and the impact of victimization, especially at a time when historic funding levels and increased flexibility make data-driven strategies for return on investment in victim assistance as critical as ever.
Webinar participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about the data and how they might be used to inform their research and practice.
This webinar describes how researchers identified the concept of Coercive Sexual Environments and have built relationships with community partners to create a program focused on the sexual health and safety of young people. In neighborhoods where disadvantage and violence are great and collective efficacy and social control are low, a gender-specific neighborhood mechanism can emerge in which harassment, domestic violence, and sexual exploitation of women and girls become part of everyday life. The Urban Institute has worked with the Benning Terrace neighborhood of the DC Housing Authority to develop Promoting Adolescent Sexual Health and Safety, a 10-week program for youth living in public housing. The curriculum focuses on breaking down harmful gender norms, supporting racial and ethnic pride, and educating youth about safe sex practices and healthy relationships. The program also helps youth build positive connections. Through this multifaceted approach, the program aims to improve youths’ knowledge and attitudes about sexual violence and teen dating violence, while reducing perpetration and victimization.
In seeking information about evidence-based victim programs, you may find reports of outcome evaluations. Rather than simply checking “Program Evaluated” off the list, develop your own ability to critically review those reports!
Stan Orchowsky, Senior Research Fellow at the Justice Research and Statistics Association, will lead practitioners through an interactive webinar that will give them confidence in reviewing outcome evaluations. Participants will:
Learn key issues that can distinguish good from poor quality evaluations
Understand common evaluation terms
Test drive a checklist for critical review of an evaluation
Are you a researcher looking to do “real world” research that impacts crime victim response? Are you a victim service provider looking to partner with a researcher to inform your work? Do you want to learn more about partnerships while engaging with colleagues like yourself? Then this webinar is for you! Dr. Christine Murray will lead you through the benefits – and challenges – of researcher-practitioner partnerships to set you on the road toward more successful collaboration. During the hour-long webinar, there will be opportunities to share your voice and questions with colleagues and other Center for Victim Research staff.