What Judges Need to Know About Domestic Violence in the LGBTQ Community

April 27, 2016

Presenters: Judge Elizabeth Berns, King County Superior Court and Prof. Todd Brower, Judicial Education Director of the Williams Institute at University of California, Los Angeles.
Is your court sensitive to LGBTQ survivors? When judicial responses don't account for the unique dynamics of LGBTQ domestic violence, courts are less effective at helping survivors stay safe. Recent studies show that LGBTQ survivors face significant challenges accessing the court system. In one study, more than half (55%) of LGBTQ petitioners were denied protection orders, while nearly 45% were denied admission to a domestic violence shelter entirely. When LGBTQ survivors are elderly or from communities of color, problems accessing help can be even more difficult. Join Judge Elizabeth Berns and Prof. Todd Brower for an in-depth look at how LGBTQ survivors face powerful cultural barriers inhibiting disclosure, preventing help-seeking, and accessing the court system. Participants will analyze the dynamics of LGBTQ partner abuse and learn how to engage LGBTQ communities in collaborative domestic violence efforts. Faculty will also identify available resources on LGBTQ domestic violence and work through several active discussion problems with participants.


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