Session: Family Violence Research in Asian Immigrant Communities in the U.S.: What Is Missing? (Society for Social Work and Research 24th Annual Conference - Reducing Racial and Economic Inequality)

203 Family Violence Research in Asian Immigrant Communities in the U.S.: What Is Missing?

Saturday, January 18, 2020: 8:00 AM-9:30 AM
Supreme Court, ML 4 (Marriott Marquis Washington DC)
Cluster: Violence against Women and Children (VAWC)
Abha Rai, MSW, University of Georgia, Nathan Perkins, PhD, Loyola University, Chicago and Y. Joon Choi, Ph.D., MSW, MA, University of Georgia
Asians are considered one of the largest and fastest growing immigrant groups in the U.S., comprising 5.6% of the population. About 73% of adult Asians in the U.S. are foreign-born. According to a national study, 20% of Asian women have experienced intimate partner violence (PV) during their lifetime. These prevalence rates, however, are likely to be conservative given language barriers, cultural definitions of abuse, stigma, fear of police, and underreporting to medical legal, or social services. In fact, Asian & Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence estimates a much higher percentage (21–55) % of Asian women reporting experience of violence during their lifetime via community-based studies. Based on past research common socio-cultural values of patriarchy, collectivism, family privacy, shame to seek outside help, and religious beliefs supporting strict gender norms have been found to contribute to IPV in Asian immigrant communities. Additionally, several acculturative stressors related to the transition while immigration impact family life; and put Asian immigrant families at risk for IPV. Due to barriers to help seeking unique to immigrant victims (i.e., language difficulty, lack of culturally appropriate services, lack of knowledge about existing resources, immigration status, financial dependency, and discrimination and negative stereotypes), Asian immigrant victims of IPV rarely seek help from formal service providers. Despite the increased risk of experiencing family violence upon immigration to the U.S., there is limited research pertaining to family violence among Asian families. What other types of family violence Asian immigrant families experience? How does IPV look like among Asian immigrant families? These are some unexplored questions. Several reasons for these gaps in research exist; such as lack of the use of culturally responsive instruments, nascent nature of research on family violence among Asian immigrant families, and small or unrepresentative sample sizes. The goal of this roundtable is to construct a dialogue around distinct types and nature of family violence within Asian immigrant families. Additionally, the presenters will focus on ways in which family violence research can be conducted in a culturally responsive manner with Asian immigrant families. Presenter 1 will discuss tactics of in-law related abuse common in South Asian households and highlight the importance of relying on a culturally responsive instrument used to capture this information. Presenter 2 will argue that exposure to both the American and host Asian culture can not only be stressful, but may also prolong adjustment times among children, potentially enhancing their risk of perpetrating or being victims of sibling violence among Asian immigrant families. Presenter 3 will discuss spiritual violence in Asian immigrant households and the cultural nuances that promote this type of violence. All three presenters will discuss: a) gaps in research on family violence among Asian immigrant families, b) interconnection between IPV, sibling violence, and spiritual violence; and c) future research direction on the gaps, including potential interventions that may work with Asian immigrant families. Finally, the audience will be invited to ask questions, share experiences, and discuss opportunities related to research on family violence among Asian immigrant families.

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