Multilevel Risk and Protective Factors for Intimate Partner Violence Among African, Asian, and Latina Immigrant and Refugee Women: Perceptions of Effective Safety Planning Interventions

Bushra Sabri, Nkiru Nnawulezi, Veronica P.S. Njie-Carr, Jill Messing, Allison Ward-Lasher, Carmen P Alvarez, Jacquelyn C Campbell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Immigrant and refugee women are at high risk for intimate partner violence (IPV) and intimate partner homicide (IPH). Given the growing number of immigrants and refugees in the US and the concerns about IPV and IPH among immigrant and refugee groups, this paper aims to identify survivors and practitioners’ perceptions of (a) common and culturally specific risk and protective factors for IPV and IPH for immigrant and refugee women and (b) areas of safety planning interventions for survivors who are at risk for severe or lethal violence by an intimate partner. Qualitative data for this multi-site study were collected from women and practitioners residing in seven geographically diverse US locations. Eighty-three in-depth interviews were conducted with adult immigrant and refugee survivors of IPV, who identified as Asian (n = 30), Latina (n = 30), and African (n = 23). Additionally, nine focus groups and five key informant interviews were conducted with practitioners (n = 62) who serve immigrant and refugee survivors of IPV. Results revealed multilevel risk and protective factors for IPV/IPH found at the societal level (e.g., patriarchal cultural norms), relationship level (e.g., partner abusive behaviors), and individual level (e.g., acculturation in the US). These findings can inform the development of culturally responsive risk assessment and safety planning interventions across legal, social service, and healthcare settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)348-365
Number of pages18
JournalRace and Social Problems
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2018



  • Immigrant
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Refugee
  • Safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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