UNH Research Finds One in 10 N.H. Teens a Victim of Dating Violence

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

DURHAM, N.H. – Nearly one in 10 New Hampshire teens reported being the victim of physical dating violence during the past year and more than one in 10 reported being the victim of sexual dating violence, according to new research released by the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire.

According to the researchers, being female, a racial/ethnic minority or a sexual minority significantly increased the risk of sexual and physical dating violence victimization.

The researchers also found that while teens who lived in rural communities experienced dating violence at rates identical to those in in urban and suburban communities, rates of victimization increased for teens who lived in impoverished communities and for those who reported participation in activities run by community groups like the YMCA, church groups and sports teams.

“We were surprised to learn that teens who reported participating in community groups were more likely to report sexual dating violence victimization,” the researchers said. “It will be important for future research to better understand it, especially given our finding that teens who reported higher levels of feeling like they mattered in their community also reported lower levels of physical and sexual dating violence.”

“More research and community conversations are needed to ensure all teens in New Hampshire have access to comprehensive violence prevention initiatives in all grade levels that included a focus on diversity and inclusivity, positive youth development and structural inequities like poverty,” the researchers said.

The Carsey report can be found here: https://carsey.unh.edu/publication/teen-dating-violence-nh

The research was conducted by Katie Edwards, assistant professor of psychology and women’s studies and faculty affiliate at the Prevention Innovations Research Center and the Carsey School, and Angela Neal, assistant professor at the University of South Carolina Lancaster.

The Carsey School of Public Policy conducts research, leadership development, and engaged scholarship relevant to public policy. They address pressing challenges, striving for innovative, responsive, and equitable solutions at all levels of government and in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors.

The University of New Hampshire is a flagship research university that inspires innovation and transforms lives in our state, nation and world. More than 16,000 students from all 50 states and 71 countries engage with an award-winning faculty in top ranked programs in business, engineering, law, liberal arts and the sciences across more than 200 programs of study. UNH’s research portfolio includes partnerships with NASA, NOAA, NSF and NIH, receiving more than $100 million in competitive external funding every year to further explore and define the frontiers of land, sea and space.