Differently-abled people in New Zealand report higher rates of violence

Wellington, Jul 22 (IANS): A new study from the University of Auckland released on Thursday highlighted the abuse of differently-abled people in New Zealand, showing rates of violence much higher than those experienced by the rest of the population.

It also shows how home can be a place of abuse for disabled people, reports Xinhua news agency.

Forty per cent of differently-abled women experience physical violence from an intimate partner over their lifetime, compared with 25 per cent of non-disabled women, University of Auckland associate professor Janet Fanslow said on Thursday.

Intimate partner violence includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological abuse, controlling behaviours and economic abuse.

"Information about the prevalence of violence has been sought by the disabled community for many years," said Fanslow.

"This study highlights the need to develop and support violence prevention and response programmes that are accessible and appropriate for everyone.

"Prevention and response services also need to be equipped with the knowledge and resources to respond to multiple circumstances that can increase the risk of violence occurring, particularly gender and disability," she added.

The new research was presented in two papers, one on intimate partner violence, the other on non-partner violence, just published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

The data came from the 2019 New Zealand Family Violence Study, which interviewed almost 3,000 people.

About one-in-five women and about one-in-seven men reported a disability.



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