Thursday, August 10, 2006

Study of domestic violence identifies abuse by race groups

By Tarryn Le Chat

According to the Cape Times, verbal and psychological abuse were found to be the most frequent forms of abuse in the Western Cape in a study that aims to assess among other things the impact an Interim Protection Order (IPO) had on the well-being of domestic violence victims.

The study was conducted by Mosaic, a local non-government organisation operating as a healing centre for women who are are victims of domestic violence.

It was also done in conjunction with Tertia Vogt, a Stellenbosch University doctoral student of psychology.

The aim of the study also included ensuring a greater understanding of domestic violence in the province and identifying the needs of victims.

Statistics showed that white and coloured groups experienced the most verbal abuse, while there was a trend in the black group to experience less. Coloured groups experienced less physical abuse than in white and black groups.

Shouting was cited by 100% of white participants, 93% of coloured participants and 87% of black participants.

There was a trend within white groups to destroy property more than in the other groups. There was a trend for abusers in the coloured group to take the victim's money more than in the black groups, however, black groups were more proned to kicking.

Most participants (83.8%) felt that the IPO helped them in that the abuse either became less or stopped entirely. The study made several recommendations.

One of the recommendations was that court processes be improved and another was the proper training of court personnel.


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