Intimate Partner Violence

  • Homicide is a leading cause of death during pregnancy
  • Up to 20% of pregnant women experience violence during their pregnancy
  • 28% of women will experience intimate partner violence in their lifetime.
  • More than three women are killed each day in the United States by a current or previous husband or boyfriend.
  • The majority of homicides of women are perpetrated by an intimate partner
  • Women are 9 times more likely to be killed by an intimate partner than a stranger
  • Among women killed by an intimate partner, firearms are the most common cause of death
  • Women who are African-American, younger than 25 years and unmarried have the highest risk for homicide during pregnancy, but the problem is seen across all demographic groups
  • Witnessing violence between one’s parents or caretakers is the strongest risk factor for transmitting violence from one generation to the next
  • Boys who witness domestic violence are twice as likely to abuse their own partners and children when they become adults
  • 30-60% of perpetrators of intimate partner violence also abuse children in the household
  • Most instances of intimate partner violence are never reported

Why It Matters

The societal costs of intimate partner violence are staggering.

  • Costs of intimate partner violence (IPV) against women alone in 1995 exceeded an estimated $5.8 billion, including nearly $4.1 billion in the direct costs of medical and mental health care and nearly $1.8 billion in the indirect costs of lost productivity. Note – this data is considered an underestimate because the costs associated with the criminal justice system were not included in this study. (CDC, 2016)
  • The link between domestic violence and mass shootings has recently been observed:
  1. An analysis of FBI data on mass shootings from 2009 to 2015 by the gun control group “Everytown for Gun Safety” found that almost 60% of the cases included a spouse, former spouse or other family member among the victims — and that 16 percent of the attackers had previously been charged with domestic violence. 2) In an analysis done by the New York Times, 31% of mass shooting deaths in 2015 were related to domestic violence.
  • When one examines the costs of domestic violence, it’s important to look at the youngest victims. According to a 2011 study by Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, more than 5 million children are exposed to intimate partner violence in one year, with nearly a million witnessing severe physical violence. Lifetime exposure rates to intimate partner physical violence were 17.9% or about 13.6 million children. The effects are long-term and devastating.