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Free Content Effectiveness, Victim Safety, Characteristics, and Enforcement of Protective Orders

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This study sought to review the extant literature on effectiveness and safety associated with orders of protection from abuse. Forty-three scholarly articles were reviewed and placed in a table representing four themes, including (a) victim safety and effectiveness (as measured by protective order [PO] violations and revictimization); (b) perceptions of victim satisfaction, safety, and psychological well-being; (c) predictors and characteristics of victims, perpetrators; and (d) the enforcement of POs. Results suggest that approximately 40%–50% of POs are violated. Although some large-scale studies have found significant reductions in revictimization, a larger number of smaller community samples have found physical and psychological abuse increases upon issuance of a PO. Research on perceived safety and effectiveness suggests female victims feel safer when POs are issued and find them effective. Issues associated with enforcement demonstrate difficulty enforcing and POs. Issues of public policy and directions for future research are discussed.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-10-01

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  • Partner Abuse, a peer-reviewed journal, recognizes that physical and emotional abuse among dating, cohabitating and married partners is as a major public health and social problem in North America and around the world. Its purpose is to advance knowledge, practice and policies through a commitment to rigorous, objective research and evidence-based solutions. In addition to original research papers and literature reviews, the journal welcomes viewpoints and commentaries on the topic of partner abuse, as well as clinical case studies, book reviews and letters to the editor.
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