“What you always do before you make a decision is consult. The best public policy is made when you are listening to people who are going to be impacted. Then, once a policy is determined, you call on them to help you sell it.”
— Elizabeth Dole

“Domestic violence is a burden on numerous sectors of the social system and quietly, yet dramatically, affects the development of a nation… batterers cost nations fortunes in terms of law enforcement, health care, lost labor and general progress in development. These costs do not only affect the present generation; what begins as an assault by one person on another, reverberates through the family and the community into the future."  Cathy Zimmerman, London School of Hygeine and Tropical Medicine  (Plates in a basket will rattle, 1994)

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Tackling Domestic Violence:
Analyzing the situation and finding ways to create healthier communities

Key Speakers

Doris Krakrafaa-Bestman, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, Department of Social Sciences, Alabama A & M University
Mary Beth Becker-Lauth, Community Education and Outreach Manager at Women's Advocates
Chitra Raghavan, Professor of Psychology, Director, MA Program in Forensic Mental Health Counseling at John Jay College of Criminal Justice
Dr. CarolAnn Peterson, Domestic Violence Consultant & Strangulation Expert Witness. University of Southern California
Christopher Maxwell, Professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University and is a member of MSU's Center for Gender in Global Context (GenCen)

This event was held on Thursday, March 23rd 2023.


According to the National Statistics on Domestic Violence, around 20 people per minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. On average this is equal to more than 10 million women and men a year. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 9 men experience severe intimate partner physical violence. After experiencing abuse and violence, many individuals experience mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress order (PTSD) and depression, fear, thoughts of suicide, physical injury, and many other symptoms that are silent to the rest of the world. As the National Statistics on Domestic Violence continues to detail, “intimate partner violence accounts for 15% of all violent crime.” Additionally, 19% of all domestic violence cases involve weapons. The presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation increases the risk of homicide by 500%.

Statistics also reveal that women between the ages of 18 and 24 are at the most risk of domestic violence. In speaking about gender-based violence, it’s important to note that race also is a key component of who is more at risk of suffering from domestic violence. According to the Intersection of Domestic Violence, Race/Ethnicity, and Sex of New York City, a brief used by the New York City Police Department (NYPD) to tackle domestic and gender-based violence, Black and Hispanic women are more prevalent of being victims. “The race/ethnicity analysis shows that Black New Yorkers are disproportionately impacted across every domestic violence offense analyzed. Sometimes, as in the disproportionate impact associated with domestic violence homicide, felony assault and strangulation, the impact is double that would be expected based on population. Other marginalized groups, such as Hispanics, experienced disproportionate impacts as they relate to domestic violence rapes and sex offenses.” While this is specifically for New York, across the country we can see higher rates of domestic violence for Black and Hispanic individuals, versus that of other ethnicities. Does geography play any part in helping to avoid or limit this from occurring? According to a study done by DovePress in 2011 on women in Nigeria, “the prevalence of domestic violence among rural women was significantly higher than that among urban women.” Similarly in the United States, NCBI reports that “in particular, subjects living in isolated rural areas reported a higher frequency and much higher severity of abuse than did their urban counterparts. For example, 61.5% of isolated rural women reported four or more events of physical violence in the past year compared with 39.3% of urban women.” The highest rate of domestic violence in the United States occurs in Oklahoma. According to World Population Review, “about 49.1% of Oklahoma women and 40.7% of Oklahoma men experience domestic violence in their lifetimes, including intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner rape, or intimate partner stalking. This is the highest in the United States.”

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, many times abuse is not recognized as so. “Recognizing abuse is the first step.” Things like cultural context can also influence what is categorized or viewed as abuse. “Domestic violence can affect anyone, but the way in which it appears may manifest itself or be received differently depending on the setting in which it occurs. Cultural context can play a large role in a survivor’s decision to leave an abusive relationship. The specific cultural setting may be determined by your race, gender, sexuality, class, education, etc.” Domestic violence also affects people around the abused victim, as most witnesses tend to be young children who grow up with the trauma of seeing physical violence in their own environment. As the National Domestic Violence Hotline continues to exemplify, “abuse is a learned behavior,” which is why it is not healthy for young individuals to be exposed to this type of trauma. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was passed in 1994 to ensure that domestic violence be charged as a national crime. However, many times cases take years to get settled or people are hesitant to report because they don't feel like the law is on their side, particularly for women. How can policy be more transparent to ensure victims that their voices are heard, and prevent future cases? This symposium seeks to address the leading causes of domestic violence, including ways to stop it from happening and how to define abuse and recognize abusive behavior.


  • Identify the main causes of domestic violence and discuss risk factors as well as the impact of geography and race/ethnicity on vulnerability.
  • Discuss gender-based violence and why women are a higher statistic in domestic abuse, as well as how LGBTQ+ minorities are impacted by domestic violence.
  • Examine what leads individuals to take part in abusive behavior, and the role that witnessing domestic abuse at a young age plays in this factor.
  • Understand the psychological effects that domestic violence has on those that have been victims of abuse.
  • Analyze ways that policy can help prevent domestic violence from rising by analyzing current legislation and looking at ways to move forward.
  • Discuss the impact that geographical location and economic status have on making individuals vulnerable to domestic violence abuse.
  • Explore ways that COVID-19 impacted the rise of domestic violence and where those statistics are at now.
  • Develop effective strategies for protecting and supporting survivors of domestic abuse, from both a national and regional perspective.

Who Should Attend?

  • Central Government Departments and Agencies
  • Charities and Non-Governmental Organizations
  • Children’s Specialist Safeguarding Nurses
  • Children’s Trusts and Children’s Centers
  • Children and Youth Services
  • Clinical Leads
  • Commissioning and Partnerships Manager
  • Community Midwives
  • Community Support Officers
  • Counselling Services
  • Criminal Justice Practitioners
  • Domestic Violence Co-Ordinator’s
  • Families Services Officers
  • Health Service Professionals
  • Heads of Community Protection
  • Independent Domestic Violence Advocates
  • Neighborhood Managers
  • Police and security services
  • Youth Mentors
  • LGBTQ+ Members and Advocates
  • Women’s Rights Organizations
This event was held on Thursday, March 23rd 2023.

Sponsorship and Exhibition Opportunities

If you’re interested in promoting your company, products and/or services at our events, please click here to enter your details and we will contact you directly. Alternatively, please call
+1 (310) 385 8750 for more information.

How to Book

+1 (310) 385 8750