Addressing the Safety and Trauma Issues of Abused Women: A Cross-Canada Study of YWCA Shelters

Addressing the Safety and Trauma Issues of Abused Women: A Cross-Canada Study of YWCA Shelters

Shelters for women are often seen as the major resource for intimate partner violence, yet few evaluations have been published. This study describes the needs, trauma symptoms and safety issues of 368 women as they enter and leave emergency shelters in ten Canadian violence against women emergency shelters; nine operated by the YWCA and a private shelter in Nova Scotia. The results capture the nature of the abuse, what the women wanted from shelter residence, the services they received, and their plans for afterwards. On shelter entry, on the Danger Assessment over 75% of women residents fell in the range of Extreme or Severe Danger. Although still in the clinical range, total and subscales on the Impact of Event Scale-Revised significantly reduced from shelter entry to exit. The women strongly endorsed the shelter in assisting them with safety, support and access to essential basic needs.

JOURNAL: Journal of International Women's Studies
VOLUME: 16
ISSUE: 3
PAGES: 101-116
PUBLICATION DATE: 2015
LOCATION: Canada