PATRIARCHAL & INTIMATE
Much of the work around patriarchal and intimate violence in the field of public health has focused both on some form of prevention (individual behavior change, active bystander intervention, gender norms change, etc.) and intervention.
Both prevention and intervention efforts have emphasized community collaborations between community organizations, healthcare, and government agencies, most often including law enforcement.
As a means of preventing or addressing sexual violence, domestic violence, and other forms of patriarchal and intimate violence, the criminal legal system response falls short. A national survey of domestic violence survivors found that of those who had called the police to respond to domestic violence, 50% reported that there was no change to their level of safety and 33% reported that it made them less safe -- and these numbers are not inclusive of the many survivors who choose to never call the police at all. We know that not only is law enforcement and imprisonment not adequately meeting the immediate safety needs of the majority of survivors in crisis, but that interactions with the criminal legal system destabilize families and communities while failing to provide the opportunity for true safety, accountability, or healing. Furthermore, we also know that police and prison staff are, with abandon, perpetrators of sexual violence towards people in their custody and of domestic violence towards their own families.
People in the movement to end child sexual abuse have long been implementing frameworks for addressing abuse outside of the criminal legal system through transformative justice and prevention. The following selected resources contextualize the ways in which the criminal legal system has been ineffective, has created more harm for survivors, or has been the primary perpetrator of patriarchal and intimate violence. Some resources also seek to challenge the dominant narrative that police and prisons inherently have a role to play in the prevention and remediation of violence.
- Moment of Truth: Statement of Commitment to Black Lives from 46 State Domestic Violence Coalitions
- Aching for Abolition
- Domestic Violence Awareness Month and #DefundPolice Factsheet
- Abolition Feminism: Celebrating 20 Years of INCITE!
- Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color
- Beyond Carceral Approaches to Addressing Violence
- Future Directions in Advocacy in Response to Interpersonal Violence
- How can public health institutions working on domestic violence, sexual violence, harassment, and trafficking re-think existing or potential relationships with law enforcement to address these issues? What are other potential partnerships that may be better to invest in and direct resources towards?
- If the role of public health is prevention of disease, how can that model be applied to patriarchal violence? What would an abolitionist approach look like in that model?
- How can public health influence policy at the federal level to focus on addressing root causes of violence and increasing options for true safety instead of endlessly investing in ineffective and harmful systems?
Who To Follow
- Not always accessible on social media, but foundational: Beth E. Richie, Mariame Kaba, Mimi Kim
- Derecka Purnell @DereckaPurnell
- Leigh Goodmark @LeighGoodmark
- Mia Mingus @Mia.Mingus
- Andrea Ritchie @dreanyc123
- Andrea James @AndreaCJames
- #MeTooBehindBars @MeTooBehindBars
- INCITE! @incitenews
- Peoples Coalition for Safety and Freedom @Ppls_Coalition
- Young Women’s Freedom Center @YoungWomenFree
- Aishah Shahidah Simmons @afrolez
- The HEAL Project @heal2end
- Amita Swadhin @amitaswadhin
For Further Learning
- Generation Five
- Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement
- Sexual Assault Survivors Want Less Police, More Trauma-Informed Professionals — Especially For Black Victims
- Violence Against Women: Reimagining VAWA: Why Criminalization Is a Failed Policy and What a Non-Carceral VAWA Could Look Like [behind paywall]
- Survivor-Centered Research: Towards an Intersectional Gender-Based Violence Movement
- Love with Accountability: Digging up the Roots of Child Sexual Abuse, Aishah Shahidah Simmons
- Impact Justice: The Restorative Justice Project
- Help Wanted: online course to provide help to individuals attracted to younger children