Conference Presents Latest Research on Family Violence

Photo of a family
The University of New Hampshire's Family Research Laboratory held its International Family Violence and Child Victimization Research Conference on July 11–13, 2010, in Portsmouth, NH. The conference is part of an ongoing series, dating back to 1981, on the latest research on all aspects of family violence and child victimization. The event draws researchers and scientist/practitioners from around the world to share, integrate, and critique accumulated knowledge on family violence. This year's event included sessions on a wide range of topics, including intervention with violent perpetrators, the social context of sexual assault, the longitudinal impact of child victimization, disability and abuse, prevention and interventions for child welfare, violence and victimization among the homeless, and the Internet and child exploitation.

In a keynote luncheon address, Deputy Associate Attorney General Karol Mason highlighted Attorney General Eric Holder's Children's Exposure to Violence Initiative, a multiyear effort to broaden the knowledge of, and promote community investment in, evidence-based strategies for reducing the impact of children's exposure to violence. "I am here today on behalf of the Justice Department to support your work that has demonstrated through research and practice that children exposed to violence is a problem that must be a priority," Mason said.

The University of New Hampshire is a leading center for the study of children's exposure to violence. Dr. David Finkelhor, Co-Director of the Family Research Laboratory and Director of the University's Crimes against Children Research Center (CCRC), directed the National Survey of Children's Exposure to Violence, the most comprehensive nationwide survey of the incidence and prevalence of children's exposure to violence. The survey, cosponsored by OJJDP and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, measures children's exposure to violence in the home, school, and community from birth to age 17.

Following the keynote address, Deputy Associate Attorney General Mason; Susan Carbon, Director of the U.S. Department of Justice's Office on Violence Against Women; and OJP and OJJDP staff hosted a listening session with researchers and other experts in the field of family violence to discuss policy and practice needs and gaps, based on current research and evidence in the field.

The Family Research Laboratory and CCRC are independent research units at the University of New Hampshire devoted to the study of children's victimization and family violence. Created in 1998, CCRC grew out of, and expands on, the work of the Family Research Laboratory, which has studied family violence and related topics since 1975.

The Family Research Laboratory engages in an active program of research, teaching and training, and information dissemination. Its researchers have developed many of the tools that social scientists use to estimate directly the scope of family violence. The research group studies a wide range of forms of family violence and has examined in detail the interrelationships of different types of family violence. It also studies the intergenerational aspects of abuse and the relationship between family violence and broader social problems.

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For more information about the conference, visit the Family Research Laboratory's Web site.

To learn more about the National Survey of Children's Exposure to Violence, visit the CCRC Web site. See also the article "OJJDP-Supported Research Cited at Conference on Evidence-Based Practices" in this issue of News @ a Glance and OJJDP's bulletin, Children's Exposure to Violence: A Comprehensive National Survey.