Research Alert: March 25, 2024

Intimate Partner Violence in Rural Communities: Perspectives from Key Informant Interviews

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a public health problem that is exacerbated by social, community, and system-level factors, especially for rural people. Despite this, there is a dearth of policies and interventions responsive to the unique needs of IPV victims and survivors in rural places. This policy brief describes findings from interviews with key informants from IPV victim support and advocacy organizations, shedding light on distinct challenges faced by rural victims and survivors. It also highlights targeted opportunities for better supporting the health and safety of rural IPV victims and survivors.

Key Findings:

  • Respondents from IPV advocacy and support organizations identified challenges faced by rural victims and survivors of IPV across six themes: lack of access to IPV related support services and health care, knowledge and competency limitations among professionals providing services to IPV victims, insufficient resources to meet basic needs, harmful attitudes and norms, detrimental policies and systems, and intersecting risks for IPV victims who belong to marginalized or at-risk groups (e.g., those who are pregnant/postpartum, immigrants, BIPOC [Black, Indigenous, and People of Color], and/or LGBTQ+ [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning]).
  • Respondents recommended opportunities for intervention across five themes: victim and survivor-centered policies and services, increased funding for IPV-related support services, investment in rural community resources, IPV-focused education and training, and other policies.
Contact Information:

Alyssa Fritz, MPH, RD, CLC
University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center

Additional Resources of Interest: