International Women’s Day Saturday

New report suggests violence is an economic barrier for women

MADISON—This Saturday is International Women’s Day, a day that has been celebrated for over one-hundred years to recognize and to further the advancement of women around the world. Advocates for victims of domestic violence are using the occasion to call attention to a new report that links violence against women with economic insecurity. Advocates say ending violence and improving the economic status of women go hand in hand.

The report, Intimate Partner Violence in the United States, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was released in late February. It documents the alarming prevalence of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence in the United States. Advocates say the report is groundbreaking because it is the first nationwide research to explore the context and consequences of domestic violence, and, therefore, it offers a more complete picture of violence’s impact on American women.

“We know women’s economic security and physical security are linked,” said Patti Seger, executive director of End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin.

“This report shows that individuals who lack stable access to food and housing experience domestic violence at higher rates,” continued Seger. “The data also show that women who are victimized are much more likely to have long-term, adverse health consequences, which can multiply economic inequities.”

While the report shows domestic violence affects both women and men, it also highlights that women experience significantly more violence and that domestic violence tends to have deeper and longer lasting consequences for female victims. In addition to experiencing more repeat violence, women were also significantly more likely to report being in danger, being injured, needing medical care, needing housing and missing time from work or school. 

“The report confirms that anyone can be a victim of domestic violence, and it reinforces that domestic violence continues to be both a source and a byproduct of women’s inequality in this country,” said Seger. “Consequently, historically marginalized groups of women bear a disproportionate burden from intimate partner violence.”

For example, the report shows that Black women and multiracial women have a significantly higher lifetime prevalence of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner, compared to White women.

“The challenge of this report is to recognize that women’s safety and equality are indistinguishably connected,” concluded Seger. “We must continue to advocate for policies and resources that protect and empower all women and that address the present and historic inequalities that women of color experience.”

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Selected Resources

Voting Guide for Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Victim Advocates

This guide is meant to help advocates assist their clients with the voting process. With the passage of the Wisconsin photo ID voting law, there is a lot of confusion about who can vote and how they can vote.  The guide explains how survivors can register to vote and ensure they have the proper documentation to vote.   In this volatile political climate and budgetary climate, we need survivors’ voices and participation at the ballot box now more than ever.   

Hope. Vision. Future. A Plan for Providing Services to Domestic Violence Victims in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Governor’s Council on Domestic Abuse has created a long-range plan for serving Domestic Abuse victims. This document includes an overview of Wisconsin Domestic Abuse Programs, including statistics, services, populations served, and a financial picture. Recommendations address the issues of Economic Justice, Financial Self- Sufficiency, Housing, Legal assistance and Primary Prevention.

2011-2012 Legislative Agenda
WCADV and WCASA Milwaukee Sick Pay Brief

Domestic and sexual violence take a tremendous toll on public health and safety in Milwaukee. This brief, filed by WCADV and WCASA, supports the Milwaukee Paid Sick Days Ordinance which permits victims paid leave to obtain services from these organizations.

2013-2014 Legislative Agenda
Changes to Wisconsin Unemployment Insurance for DV Victims - Dec 2009

WCADV Policy Development Coordinator, Tony Gibart, offers the following summary of how Wisconsin unemployment statutes have changed in response to The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

DCF Brochure about Domestic Violence and W-2

This brochure from the Department of Children and Families explains some of the resources and protections available to W-2 participants who are or were victims of domestic violence.  It is to be given to all W-2 applicants and participants. Hmong and Spanish versions are also available. 

Fact Sheets Related to Brookfield Shooting

These two fact sheets cover topics that were implicated by the shootings at a Brookfield, Wisconsin salon on Sunday, October 21, 2012.  They address (1) domestic violence and the workplace and (2) restraining orders and firearm surrender.