Family Violence on the Farm and in Rural Communities Research Team

Exploring the links: firearms, family violence and animal abuse in rural communities
Exploring the links: firearms, family violence and animal abuse in rural communities
Despite the growing body of literature on family violence, there are few studies which deal specifically with family violence in a rural context. None have examined extensively the social and cultural context of firearms in rural homes and the impact this may have on women dealing with abuse. Yet we know from our previous research that the availability of firearms in rural homes is a perceived threat by abused rural women (see Doherty, Hornosty & McCallum, 1997; Hornosty & Doherty, 2004; Doherty & Hornosty, 2004; Hornosty & Doherty, 2003). We also know that threats often extend to family pets and farm animals. The current study, which was funded by the Canada Firearms Centre, examines family violence, firearms, and pet abuse within a rural context where firearms are positively valued. The research was by conducted by Drs Doherty and Hornosty, as part of a research team, Family Violence on the Farm and in Rural Communities, at the University of New Brunswick. The research partners in the study included all the transition houses in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, Victim Services in Prince Edward Island, the Chief Firearms Officers in both provinces, Victim Services of the Fredericton City Police and Codiac RCMP in New Brunswick, and the RCMP “J” Division. The major goal of the study was to examine, from a broad regional perspective, the various dimensions or forms in which firearms serve as instruments of control, intimidation and abuse in family violence situations with a view to expanding the information base and gaining a better understanding of the risk factors that lead to, or escalate, firearms victimization of women and children in rural homes. The research documents the experiences of abused rural women and explores service providers’/crisis workers’ perceptions of domestic firearms abuse and its influence on safety planning and intervention strategies. It also sheds light on rural perceptions, norms and values on the relationships between firearms, family violence and animal abuse. The research was carried out in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island in 2005-2007, over an 18 month period. We used both surveys (quantitative data) and semi-structured interviews and focus groups (qualitative data). The research instruments were available in both official languages. We conducted a review of the literature on firearms misuse, family violence, and animal abuse as a backdrop to the research. In addition, a media content analysis of newspaper articles on selected family violence issues helped us to understand public perceptions, particularly in association with firearms. Finally, an analysis of court cases in Atlantic Canada over the past several years relating to family violence provided insights into the justice system’s response to family violence, particularly when it involved firearms victimization and/or abuse of pets.
Family violence, firearms and animal abuse in rural communities - forum report discussing research findings and promoting action
Family violence, firearms and animal abuse in rural communities - forum report discussing research findings and promoting action
This report provides an overview of a "forum" that was organized by Dr Deborah Doherty and Dr Jennie Hornosty, co-principal researchers of a study entitled “Understanding the Links: Family Violence, Firearms and Animal Abuse”. The Forum was held at the Fredericton Inn, Fredericton, New Brunswick, on May 26, 2008. The purpose of the forum was to promote discussion and action on the findings of the Family Violence, Firearms and Animal Abuse study. This is a groundbreaking study as it is one of very few research initiatives that examines the presence and effects of firearms in rural homes where actual or threatened violence towards women, children, property or animals are involved. The study used both qualitative and quantitative research methods to identify the broader cultural context of, and risk factors for, firearms misuse in selected rural communities in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. While numerous efforts were made to disseminate the findings to the public, community groups and academic audiences on the nature and extent of firearms risks in homes experiencing family violence, the researchers felt it was also important to share these findings directly with the research partners and to encourage them to discuss and act on the recommendations. The researchers hope that the findings will be used to enhance approaches to crime prevention, firearms investigations, court sanctions, and safer communities, as well as the development of better-informed intervention policies, programs and strategies designed to foster greater safety for women and other victims in rural communities across Canada.
Report on the communication and dissemination of findings of a research study - Exploring the links: family violence, firearms and animal abuse in rural communities
Report on the communication and dissemination of findings of a research study - Exploring the links: family violence, firearms and animal abuse in rural communities
The purpose of this report is to document the dissemination and communication efforts undertaken to share the findings of the research study entitled “Exploring the Links: Family Violence, Firearms, and Animal Abuse in Rural Communities”. The co-principal investigators, Dr. Deborah Doherty and Dr. Jennie Hornosty, have jointly and individually, shared and publicised both the preliminary research findings over the course of the research, as well as widely communicated the findings of the final report with a variety of stakeholders, the general public, policy-makers and the academic community. This has entailed distributing an "Executive Summary" of the research to participants and others, writing and publishing papers about the research, presenting the research at academic conferences of provincial, national and international scope, sharing the findings at "community" conferences and workshops, and finally, creating exposure in the media and making special presentations to stakeholders and policy-makers. The current report presents a detailed overview of our communication efforts for the period of the research which commenced in the winter of 2006, through until May 30, 2008. It should be noted that initiatives to disseminate the findings, and to promote evidence-based change to policies, programs and laws intended to promote safety for rural women experiencing firearms victimization, is on-going.
Étude des liens entre les armes à feu, la violence familiale et la violence envers les animaux dans les collectivités rurales
Étude des liens entre les armes à feu, la violence familiale et la violence envers les animaux dans les collectivités rurales
Malgré la masse croissante de documents sur la violence familiale, peu d’études traitent explicitement de la violence familiale dans un contexte rural. Aucune n’a examiné à fond le contexte social et culturel des armes à feu dans les foyers ruraux et les conséquences possibles des armes à feu sur les femmes aux prises avec la violence. Nous savons pourtant grâce à notre recherche antérieure que la disponibilité des armes à feu dans les foyers ruraux est perçue comme une menace par les femmes victimes de violence (voir Doherty, Hornosty et McCallum, 1997; Hornosty et Doherty, 2004; Doherty et Hornosty, 2004; Hornosty et Doherty, 2003). Nous savons aussi que souvent les menaces visent également les animaux familiers et les animaux de ferme. La présente étude, financée par le Centre des armes à feu Canada, se penche sur la violence familiale, les armes à feu et la violence envers les animaux familiers dans un contexte rural où les armes à feu sont perçues de façon positive. La recherche a été effectuée par Mme Doherty et Mme Hornosty, dans le cadre d’une équipe de recherche sur la violence familiale en milieu agricole et rural, à l’Université du Nouveau-Brunswick. Les partenaires de la recherche comprenaient toutes les maisons de transition du Nouveau-Brunswick et de l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard, les services aux victimes de l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard, les contrôleurs des armes à feu dans les deux provinces, les services aux victimes de la police de la ville de Fredericton et du Service de police régional Codiac de la GRC au Nouveau-Brunswick et la Division « J » de la GRC. L’étude avait pour but principal d’examiner, d’un vaste point de vue régional, les divers aspects ou formes que prend l’utilisation des armes à feu comme instruments de contrôle, d’intimidation et d’abus dans les situations de violence familiale afin d’étendre la base de renseignements et de mieux comprendre les facteurs de risque qui entraînent ou aggravent la victimisation des femmes et des enfants liée aux armes à feu dans les foyers ruraux. La recherche documente les expériences de femmes victimes de violence dans des collectivités rurales et elle examine les perceptions des fournisseurs de services et des travailleurs à l’intervention d’urgence au sujet de l’abus des armes à feu gardés au domicile et de son influence sur les stratégies en matière de planification de la sécurité et d’intervention. Elle éclaire également les perceptions, les normes et les valeurs rurales de la relation entre les armes à feu, la violence familiale et la violence envers les animaux. La recherche a été effectuée au Nouveau-Brunswick et à l’Île-du-Prince-Édouard au cours d’une période de 18 mois, de 2005 à 2007. Nous avons fait appel à la fois à des enquêtes (données quantitatives) et à des entrevues semi-structurées et des groupes de réflexion (données qualitatives). Les outils de recherche étaient disponibles dans les deux langues officielles. Nous avons passé en revue la documentation sur la mauvaise utilisation des armes à feu, la violence familiale et la violence envers les animaux comme toile de fond de la recherche. De plus, une analyse du contenu des articles de journaux sur des questions précises concernant la violence familiale nous a aidés à comprendre les perceptions du public, en particulier en rapport avec les armes à feu. Finalement, une analyse des affaires judiciaires au Canada atlantique au cours des dernières années en rapport avec la violence familiale nous a permis de mieux comprendre comment l’appareil judiciaire réagit à la violence familiale, en particulier dans les cas de victimisation reliée aux armes à feu et de violence envers des animaux familiers.
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