“There's no place like home”: Examining the associations between state eviction defense protections and indicators of biopsychosocial stress among survivors of intimate partner violence

Tiara C. Willie, Sabriya L. Linton, Shannon Whittaker, Isabel Martinez, Laurel Sharpless, Trace Kershaw

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Housing instability is prevalent among intimate partner violence (IPV) survivors and a source of biopsychosocial stress among this population. Eviction policies play an important role in determining housing instability of IPV survivors. However, few studies have investigated whether state-level policies that prevent evictions lessen vulnerability to biopsychosocial stress among IPV survivors. This study examined the relationship between state eviction defense policy and indicators of biopsychosocial stress among 6577 IPV survivors. State-level data on IPV-related housing policies were from a compendium on homelessness and violence. Individual-level data were collected from the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS), a nationally representative study of noninstitutionalized U.S. women and men from Wave 1 (2010). Multilevel regression models were conducted to investigate associations between the presence of an eviction defense policy and indicators of biopsychosocial stress (i.e., headaches, sleeping, safety concerns and PTSD symptoms). Stratified multilevel modeling was conducted to examine differences in the policy-stress associations across racial and ethnic groups and gender. Nearly 26% of states had an eviction defense policy for IPV survivors. Overall, residing in a state with an eviction defense policy (vs. none) was associated with no reports of frequent headaches (B [95% CI] = −0.21 [-0.41, −0.01], p <.05). For non-Hispanic Black survivors, residing in a state with an eviction defense policy (vs. none) was associated with reduced likelihood of reporting safety concerns (B [95% CI] = −1.36 [-2.16, −0.56], p <.001) and PTSD symptoms (B [SE] = −1.91 [-2.82, −1.01], p <.000). Among men survivors, residing in a state with an eviction defense policy was associated with reduced likelihood of reporting safety concerns (B [95% CI] = −0.63 [-1.26, −0.01], p <.05). State housing policies are important protective policies for IPV survivors. For IPV survivors, the eviction defense policy may interrupt the psychological sequeale of IPV and housing instability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number113957
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Volume279
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2021

Keywords

  • Eviction
  • Gender
  • Intimate partner violence
  • PTSD
  • Race
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • History and Philosophy of Science

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