Reports, Studies, Reviews and Research

Predictors of Interpersonal Violence in the Household in Humanitarian Settings: A systematic review

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Trauma, Violence, & Abuse

Interpersonal violence against women and children has increasingly been recognized as a public health priority in humanitarian emergencies. However, because the household is generally considered a private sphere, violence between family members remains neglected. A systematic literature review was conducted to identify predictors of household violence in humanitarian emergencies. This was the first known systematic review of predictors of household violence in humanitarian settings.

The household framework drew attention to several factors that are associated with violence against both women and children, including conflict exposure, alcohol and drug use, income/economic status, mental health/coping strategies, and limited social support. There is a need for longitudinal research and experimental designs that can better establish temporality between exposures and household violence outcomes, control for confounding, and inform practice. In the interim, programmers and policy makers should try to leverage the predictors identified by this review for integrated violence prevention and response strategies, with the important caveat that ongoing evaluation of such strategies is needed.

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