Domestic Violence In Canada

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Introduction Domestic violence has been recognized as a major social problem in Canada. According to Statistics Canada there are approximately 653,000 women in Canada that have experienced some form of domestic violence (Allagia & Maiter, 2006). While the women’s movement of 1970’s was instrumental in raising awareness about the issue of domestic violence among women in general (Landau, 2006), it failed to take into account the concerns of racially marginalized immigrant women (Chokshi, Desai & Adamali, 2009; Dasgupta, 2000). The experience of domestic violence is complex and further amplified in the case of racially marginalized South Asian immigrant women due to the multiple identities adorned by them on the basis of race, culture and …show more content…
World Health Organization (2002) defines it as the deliberate use of physical power or threatening behaviour, unintended or real, by an intimate partner or family member, that leads to or has high chances of causing physical harm, psychological damage, neglect or denial. There has been debate over what are the basic components in the definition of domestic violence (Landau, 2006). While the generally accepted definition encompasses broad range of divergent behavior patterns that are founded in emotional, physical, verbal and psychological abuse, there is an absence of agreement on what constitutes a ‘family’. For example unlike in the Canadian context, family in South Asian context can include members outside of nuclear unit such as aunties, uncles and cousin (Landau, 2006; Gill, 2004). At this stage it is also significant to note there is lack of universal understanding of the term abuse. Hence the acts of domestic violence stand to be understood differently across diverse contexts (Gill, 2004). The prevalence and severe consequences of domestic violence is found to be more among women. Statistics Canada (2005) stated that due to domestic violence women are more likely to be killed than men, they are two times more vulnerable to be injured and six times more likely to need medical …show more content…
According to Statistics Canada (2005) existence of physical or sexual abuse at the hands of married or common-law partners is approximately 29% for the Canadian women. Of all these women who were covered by the survey, 15% admitted to being at the receiving end of the violence at some point of their relationship and 5% of these admitted to being abused in previous one year in the relationship. These statistics help put into context the expanse and prevalence of abuse via domestic violence in the Canadian

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