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Library panel discussion to focus on gender-based violence, policy

On Wednesday, March 1, the University of Utah’s Marriott Library will be hosting a panel discussion, “Making Public Policy Personal: A Focus on Gender-based Violence.” Moderated by PBS Utah’s Mary Dickson, the conversation will be led by the U’s Sonia Salari, professor in the Department of Family and Consumer Studies, and by Annie Isabel Fukushima, associate dean of Undergraduate Studies and professor of Ethnic Studies.

Both Salari and Fukushima focus their research on gender-based violence and policy. The event will also provide a history of the anti-violence movement and challenges faced in Utah in reducing violence.

Event Details:

Making Public Policy Personal: A Focus on Gender-based Violence

Panel Discussion

March 1, 3 p.m.

J. Willard Marriott Library, Gould Auditorium, Level 1

Live streamed

According to Salari, gender-based violence is a human rights issue, and anyone can be a victim. Research has found various patterns do exist. For example, women are more often seriously injured or killed by domestic violence, when compared to men. The majority of women’s deaths by homicide take place in their own homes, by current or former intimate partners. In contrast, men’s murders are most often perpetrated by other men who are strangers or acquaintances.

“LGBT populations are also at risk of domestic violence and bias-related crimes which could be deadly,” explains Salari. “As we have seen in Utah and across the nation, intimate partner violence sometimes results in injuries or deaths to children and other family members. The entire community is rocked by these tragedies.”

Salari continues, “Differences in patterns of violence caused mortality across developed nations give us hope that gender-based violence is preventable through mechanisms, such as empirical research and thoughtful public policies. Lives can also be saved by critical, ongoing funding for community-based victim’s services.”

Fukushima said her studies of strangulation and lethality found that domestic violence cases that involved strangulation were 7.5 times more likely to lead to homicide.

“Despite the growing need for responding to increasingly complex cases of domestic violence in the state of Utah, nearly half of responders believe they are under-resourced,” Fukushima adds. “Even though there is clear danger and physical abuse, only 1 in 20 victims received medical care. Overall, there is a need to respond to domestic violence and resource social services that are so vital to supporting people.”