This page contains a selection of recent news articles and commentary about male victims of violence and abuse plus related issues. These articles are presented as a community service, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the One in Three Campaign.

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UK: More Married Men DV Victims Than Married Women

By Robert Franklin, Esq. (Fathers and Families)

More married men (2.3 per cent) suffered from partner abuse last year than married women, according to the latest British Crime Survey. Yet help is still much harder to find for men.

See here (The Independent, 4/14/13). The news media really can tell the truth about domestic violence.

It’s as rare rain in the Gobi Desert, so when it happens it’s cause for celebration.  The Independent article actually takes on the topic of men as victims of intimate partner violence and does so in a way that encourages both belief in their stories and empathy for their plight.  These are men, not women.  As such, they have their own uniquely masculine problems in trying to deal with the violence directed at them by their female partners.  In the vast majority of articles in the mainstream media, men are ignored altogether as victims or slighted by the claim that, in some way, they embellish or even misrepresent what happens to them.  In the most typical of sexist ways, because they’re men, they’re expected to either not be hurt at all or to deal with it without complaining.  The Independent article eschews all that and what’s left are a couple of actual men and their actual responses to being assaulted by their wives/girlfriends.

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Turkey: No Gender Discrimination Here, Shelters to Open for Abused Men

45 men protected from violence, minister says

By Anatolia News Agency

Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin says that 45 men are receiving protection against domestic violence while one of them is using a ‘panic button,’ saying they do not make any gender discrimination

Forty-five men across Turkey are being protected from domestic violence, while one in the southern province of Adana is using the “panic button” for added security, according to Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin, who stressed that her ministry was not only providing protection to women.

In addition, 23 men received support from the KOZA-center for the prevention and monitoring of violence.

Şahin said that in some cases men were the victims of domestic abuse. “We cannot generalize that all women are victims and all men are suspects,” she said.

Shelters for men to be open in Istanbul, İzmir

The minister said the number of women’s shelters had doubled in a year, adding that work was also being done on providing similar houses for men. “We will open men’s shelter houses in Istanbul and İzmir soon,” she said.

“We will see if will be able to meet the demand when we open shelters [for men] in these two cities,” said Şahin, adding that the majority of the demand came from the big cities.

The shelters will be particularly aimed at men whose life is in danger and men who are exposed to domestic violence and have no other place to live, according to Şahin.

Meanwhile, the new “Electronic Support System Pilot Practice” system, widely known as the “panic button,” has been introduced in Adana and Bursa. So far, just one man in Adana is using this system.

“We are responsible for protecting and monitoring the needs of all members of the family, including men, women and children. When we receive these demands, we use our institutional capacity for providing shelter and the psychological and physical needs for men. Also, men suffering from the use of alcohol and drugs or those who need economic or legal support also apply to our center,” said Şahin.

“As the ministry, we have to protect men and women when they need it. We are working for the ordering of this society, both for men and women,” she added.



Our male-victimizing myths live on (Canada)


Earl Silverman was forced to close his shelter for abused men for lack of funds. National Post

Twenty years ago Earl Silverman of Calgary, fleeing his home to escape violence from his abusive wife, had no refuge to take shelter in. There were plenty of shelters for women victims of domestic abuse, but for men the only publicly funded services were for anger management.

The message was clear to Silverman: “As a victim, I was re-victimized by having these services telling me I wasn’t a victim, but I was a perpetrator.”

Three years ago, in his own home, Silverman opened the Men’s Alternative Safe House (MASH), which until last week held the distinction of being the only privately funded shelter for male victims of domestic abuse in Canada. Now, with no public funds to help, the maintenance and grocery bills associated with running his shelter have become too onerous for him to handle. Silverman has sold his home.

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President Obama: Stop Discrimination Against Male Victims of Domestic Abuse (Survey, USA)

It is said that college is supposed to be the best time in life. For me, it was far from that. Shortly before my high school graduation, my mother began to take out her problems on her family in increasingly severe ways. She would frequently become angry at my father and me. While the severity of the problem waxed and waned over the years, during the worst periods I was yelled at every single day, in some cases as much as 5-10 times per day. She also became very controlling of our behavior. An action as simple and innocuous as walking from one room of the house to another would require obtaining her permission. It was not until I had endured this treatment for three years that I heard a report on the radio about verbal and emotional abuse, a subcategory of domestic abuse, and realized that I was a victim of it.

When I finally came to the realization that I needed professional help, I had to wait due to difficulty finding the money to pay to see a psychologist. I finally got the help I needed after being subjected to the abuse for five years. Yet, the effects caught up with me several months ago and I developed an anxiety problem severe enough to cause physiological symptoms that required a trip to the emergency room.

Now, help is finally on the way for victims of domestic abuse. Under the provisions of the Affordable Care Act, the administration recently instituted regulations requiring services for domestic abuse to be covered as preventive care. Screening questionnaires will be used to identify patients who may be victims of abusive relationships. Insurance plans are now required to cover this screening, as well as psychological counseling for victims, without copays or deductibles. There’s just one catch: The regulations only require that these services be covered for women, and I am a man. Even worse, this discrimination extends not just to those like me who have been emotionally abused but also to those who have been physically or sexually abused.

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Power and control; breaking the cycle of silence « Karen Woodall

Working in the field of family separation it is never possible to be far away from the problem of domestic violence. Whether it be an issue which is real or alleged or an issue which is under or over reported, family separation and domestic violence appear, at least from the stories we are told, to go hand in hand.

In many ways the issue of domestic violence is a thorny one within the overall landscape of family separation. For some, domestic violence is at the heart of family separation and must drive all policy and practice around it, for others it is a problem which causes false allegations and is used as a tool to prevent relationships between children and a parent (usually a father). For practitioners who work with family separation, understanding domestic violence and the way in which it is responded to is a serious business. Serious because it can, at the outer extremes, mean the difference between life and death for parents and children or the complete and utter destruction of the relationship between parents and children through false allegations. Either way, domestic violence is an issue that must be taken seriously across all of its manifestations.

Taking domestic violence seriously however does not necessarily mean having to listen to the exhortations of the domestic violence lobby groups. These groups, made up as they are of women (and some men) who believe that domestic violence is only to be understood within a paradigm of patriarchal control, are extremely powerful and determined in their arguments. The core thrust of these being that violence is an issue which is created within a society dominated by patriarchal power and control over women and that liberation from this requires a zero tolerance towards any act of domestic violence across the universe.

For these groups, domestic violence is primarily viewed as being an issue which is perpetrated by men against women and the response to this is to treat every act of violence as a danger signal of the highest magnitude. For these groups, educating women to understand their conflicted relationships within an understanding of being oppressed, is key to liberating them from the dynamic that puts them in danger from ‘their perpetrator’, the use of the possessive term in this culture being akin to the way in which survivors refer to people who abused them as being ‘my abuser.’

But domestic violence does not have to be considered in this way for it to be taken seriously and in fact, to pursue an understanding of domestic violence in this one, narrow focused way, can put men, women and children at serious risk of harm. There is a huge body of research, both in this country and across the world, which has focused upon a much more nuanced understanding of the ways in which violence in families is present during and after separation and it seems vital, to me, that in working with family separation it is to this, more sophisticated way of understanding and responding that we look for guidance to our own policy and practice development.

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