Violence Against Women in Disasters:A Study of Domestic Violence Programs in the United States and Canada
AbstractAlthough data are limited, field reports indicate that reported violence against women increases in communities hit by environmental disasters. Seventy-seven Canadian and U.S. domestic violence programs participated in a study of organizational readiness, impact, and response employing a mail survey and open-ended telephone interviewing. Low levels of in-house emergency preparedness were found, but also strong interest in increasing disaster readiness. Those programs most severely impacted by disasters reported increased service demands, as long as 1 year after the event, and decreased organizational resources. Strategies are suggested for more fully engaging women's services in community-based disaster mitigation, planning, and response.