Study Design: We used baseline interview data collected from among 191 women, in a randomized controlled trial testing the feasibility, safety and efficacy of an IPV victimization intervention named Project WINGS: ‘Women Initiating New Goals Safety’. Bivariate associations were analyzed with physical, sexual and verbal IPV as the dependent variables tested for their associations to baseline factors including substance use (drug use and/or binge drinking), anxiety/depression scores, history of utilizing IPV services, level of IPV self-efficacy among other variables in the overall sample and specifically in the sub-sample of Black/AA substance-using women (n=128), recruited from community correction sites in New York City.
Results: Data were analyzed for a subgroup of 128 Black/AA female participants who reported recent IPV. Among these women, the past year prevalence rates of experiencing IPV was significantly higher than the rest of the participants. Physical IPV was reported in 42.9% of the women, while 30.4% reported sexual and 72.6% reported psychological IPV in the past 12 months. Additionally, at baseline, Black/AA who experienced sexual or verbal IPV reported seeking IPV support services (r=.130; .122; p<.05) and had a significantly lower IPV self-efficacy (r=-.261; p<.01) but higher than their depressed (r=-.197;p<.01) and comparable to their anxious (r=-.234;p<.01) counterparts . Further, higher the instance of physical or sexual IPV, lower was the level of IPV self-efficacy.
Conclusions: Prevalence of all types of IPV was high (sexual, physical and psychological) and our findings show that IPV is associated with substance abuse, and poor mental health. However, despite such challenges, women exhibit a high level of help-seeking behavior, and if healthy, are more self-efficacious. Community corrections settings may be optimal venues to launch IPV prevention interventions that have potential to reach and engage an ever-growing number of Black/ African American substance-using women.