Oxana Rotari, Doctor of Law, Associate Professor, ULIM
According to estimated statistics in Europe if one in five women is rampant in the family, then in the U.S. every 15 seconds a woman is beaten.More than 60 million women have died as a result of partner violence, 75% by following to be abused by him even after breaking the relationship.So if 16% complained the episode of domestic violence to the police, 15% discussed with a medical professional when only 9% have asked legal advice.By following question arises: what is domestic violence?
Keywords: abuse, violence, family abuse, injury.
Portretul criminologic al femeii-victima a violenței domestice.
Conform datelor statistice estimate daca in Europa una din cinci femei este agresata in cadrul familiei,atunci in SUA la fiecare 15 secunde o femeie este batuta.Mai mult ca atit, circa 60 milioane de femei au decedat ca urmare a violentei partenerului,75% urmind a fi agresate de catre acesta si dupa ruperea relatiei.Si daca 16% au reclamat epizodul de violenta domestica la politie,15% au discutat cu un cadru medical atunci doar 9% au solicitat consultanta juridica.Prin urmare apare intrebarea:ce reprezinta violenta domestica?
Cuvinte-cheie: maltratare, violenta, familie, abuz, prejudiciu.
“…Human rights must be part of global education and human dignity ,and all physical or mental violence issues against human person are a violation their rights.”
European Parliament, resolution from 11.06.1986
The concept of domestic violence first appeared in the 70’s of the last century for defining violence and abuse of male to his partner, this type of domestic violence involves various forms of aggression: physical, sexual, psychological, economic.
Roman Encyclopedic Dictionary defines violence as: “a vice of consent, which involves Mental constraint exercised by the one person to lead it into making a legal act”.
In the opinion of Stark and Flitcraft: «domestic violence represents an threat or a challenge, spent in present or in the past, a physical injury in the relationship between the social partners, regardless of their legal status or home.The physical or sexual attack may be accompanied intimidation or verbal abuse, destruction of property belonging to the victim, isolation from friends, families and other potential sources of support, threats made to the victim other significant persons, including children, theft, control over money, personal belongings of the victim, food, displacement, phone and other sources of care and protection”.
“Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Violence against Women” adopted by the ONU in 1993 defines domestic violence as any act by which is caused harm: physical, sexual, psychological or suffering to women, including threats. Acts as privation of liberty, whether confinement occurs in public or private space.
According to the United Nations Conference on Human Rights which was held in Vienna in 1993, violence against women includes the following forms:
— physical, sexual and psychological produced in the family (beatings, violence linked to various forms of exploitation, sexual abuse of women, marital rape, female genital mutilation);
— physical and mental violence occurred in the community (rape, sexual abuse, sexual harassment, intimidation at work, trafficking in women and forced prostitution);
— physical, sexual and psychological committed or protected by state institutions.
We can mention that violence against women include violation of women’s rights in the context of human rights in situations of armed conflict (especially war crimes), rape, sexual slavery and coercion to remain pregnant and give birth to children, and constraint forced abortion, forced constraint of contraceptive use, child killing of woman sex and prenatal sex selection.
According to Article 2 of RM Law on domestic violence prevention and combating if from 01.03.2007 (effective from 18.09.2008) domestic violence is any intentional action or inaction, except for self-defense or defense of shares of other persons, physically or verbally manifested through physical, sexual, psychological, spiritual, economic or by causing material or moral damage, committed by a family member against other family members, including against children and against common property or personal. In this context we distinguish:
physical violence — the intentional infliction of bodily integrity or health by hitting, pushing, tossing, hair pulling, pinching, cutting, burning, choking, biting, in any form or by any intensity, by poisoning, intoxication or other actions with similar effect;
sexual violence — means any violence with sexual or other unlawful sexual conduct in the family or other interpersonal relationships, such as marital rape, prohibiting the use of contraceptives, sexual harassment, any unwelcome sexual conduct imposed, forced prostitution; any illegal sexual conduct against a minor family member, including fondling, kissing, laying the body and other unwanted touching of a sexual nature, or any other similar actions;
psychological violence — is imposing the will or personal control by causing tension and mental suffering by offense remarks, swearing, insults, nicknames, blackmail, destruction demonstration objects, verbal threats by ostentatious display of weapons or by hitting domestic animals, neglect, involvement in personal lives, acts of jealousy, imposing isolation through detention, including the family home, isolation from family, community, friends, professional achievement, prohibiting attendance at educational institutions; dispossession of identity, deprivation of access to information, and other similar actions;
spiritual violence — underestimate or minimize the importance of meeting the moral and spiritual needs by prohibiting, ridicule, penalty aspirations of family members, by prohibiting, limiting remarks, ridicule or punishment of access to cultural, ethnic, linguistic or religious tax an unacceptable personal value system, or other similar actions with similar repercussions;
economic violence — deprivation of economic resources, including primary deprivation of livelihood such as food, medicine, basic necessities, abuse of a position of superiority to steal personal property, prohibition of the right to possess, use and dispose the common property, unfair control over goods and common resources; refusal to support the family, imposing hard labor and harmful in detriment of health, including a minor family member, other similar actions;
moral damage — the act of causing suffering to a family member, including a child, in the family or other interpersonal relationships, that leads to humiliation, fear, inability defense against physical violence, the feelings of frustration;
pecuniary damage — that can be evaluated or estimated financial / monetary resulting from any act of domestic violence, cohabiting, and costs for dealing with cases of domestic violence.
Depending on geographical Arial 20 to 50 percent of women are victims of domestic violence, 10% to 25% being forced to have sex with their partner. So, marital rape is a determinant for suicide. We can mention just few examples that are given: the EU rate of women-victims of domestic violence who kill themselves is 12% in the U.S. range from 35% to 40% in Sri Lanka when it is 55% (women having age 15–25 years). Therefore countries like Australia, Austria, Barbara, Canada, Cyprus, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Mexico, Russia, Spain have adopted laws against marital rape.
Family as Balzac said is the cell of the society. Certain families in which are manifestation of domestic violence becomes less transparent and open social environment immediately extended family, neighbors, friends, colegii. Are becoming obvious social isolation of these families, though gain esteem in the eyes of others, a sense of esteem and guilt that makes them isolate. The husband bans the wife to maintain social relationships in which she could confess her suffering and could possibly get help.
Domestic violence usually occurs within an intimate relationship, restricted space and private actions accompanying violence are: intimidation and manipulation, isolation and seizing control of money and abuse of children. Defined as a behavioral act, domestic violence carries an instrumental, intentionally, learned character.
Within his instrumental behavior abuser gets from the victim what he wants, behaviors become functional if they have results. If the behavior’s results do not meet expected ones for those who apply it — tends not to be repeated after a period of time when tolerated violent behavior through inaction persists and gets worse.
The intentional behavior is produced with the intention of obtain control and domination, to maintain power, usually characterized by the intention that the abuser does not recognize, but can be identified by the results they produce.
Learned is a type of behavior in which the partner is not born with it. Remember about violence that, according to the inter-psychological theory (author Gabriel Tarde) deviant behavior is imitated, so children learn by imitation representing the family model that is a learned/perceived value. As argument we use those 70% of offenders who come from families where violence was applied.
What are the specific elements that differ family violence from other forms of assault? If they had been categorized, they were:
— the permanent access of the aggressor to his victim;
— existence of a cycle of violence (repetition time, with increasing frequency and the increasing severity);
— changes in the personality of the those involved with lower efficiency in fulfilling their social function;
— emotional relations between the two partners become dormant;
— privacy, which makes the victim have less access to sources of support;
— the tend of others not to intervene, the social tolerance phenomenon;
— aspects of torture of the victims;
— lack of specialist and corresponding services ;
— usually 91% of domestic violence victims are women, so violence is rooted in gender inequality both in traditional structures and institutionalized power.
In XXI century violence was a serious threat to human rights, and to the extent in which has negative consequences on health, the right to life and the right of each individual to be treated with respect. By result in a family of persistent violence children grow up in an atmosphere where their basic needs (need for safe, orderly life, love and so on) are deeply neglected. So, the main function of the family, as raising children becomes distorted with large and dramatic consequences for the future times, a victim of violence becomes less able to provide care for the child’s needs from the possible physical and social dangers.
In an atmosphere of violence a child is often neglected, making him develop behaviors that make him recognizable from among others:
— physical problems: unexplained illnesses exposed to accidents both at home and outside the home, slower physical development;
— mental-emotional problems: increased anxiety, feelings of guilt, fear of abandonment, isolation, anger, fear and death;
— psychological problems: self-doubt, depression, happier life comparison with colleagues;
— behavior problems: aggression or passivity from others aggression, problems sleeping, fighting, running away from home, pregnancies at young age, mutilation, drug and alcohol;
— school issues: confidence, sudden changes in school performance, lack of concentration, lack of manners school, identifying with negative heroes.
According to the study “grow up in RM” conducted by UNICEF in RM about half of the parents surveyed considered as an acceptable form of punishment spanking children, when 10% were of the opinion that there are times when physical punishment is required.In the same study 1/3 of the children surveyed confessed they are beaten in the family, 40% being slapped, threatened with physical abuse 25% and 33% were verbally abused by teachers, 13% were undergoing of a physical punishment.
In Moldova studies about children’s relationships with their parents were not undertaken, when a ONU study found that children in difficulty by public opinion are: alcoholism (71%), lack of parental responsibility (66%), family disruption (64%) are the main causes of difficulty in which live children.
Study results show that 35.42% of street children leave their family home because of violence occurred between parents, 2% due to sexual abuse, 39% of street children reported that at least one of the parents were alcoholics, 40% came from dysfunctional families.
Recent research shows that usually is associated with childhood physical violence, whether personal experience (41% of women and 59% men being abused in childhood) or as defining relationships between parents (25% of women and 26% of men witnessed parental violence in childhood).
Like an iceberg domestic violence consists of two parts: the visible (family disagreements, inability peaceful resolution of conflicts, poverty, alcohol and drugs) and the less visible (habit of using force in order to achieve their goal; consider family law matters socially taboo; lack of social protection of the victims from domestic violence; gender inequalities in society; hierarchical relationships within the society).
So on, domestic violence is a serious social problem, hidden in the same time. Violence and abuse within the family is a serious problem with adverse effects on the targeted ones. These is the reasons why domestic violence is unacceptable and we must do everything possible to prevent and combat it. For example of this we can serve Norway which launched back in November 1999 the government plan of action about violence against women.
In 2002 was established a post for coordinating family violence issues in every distructual police office in Norway, meant to support police efforts to prevent domestic violence.
In January 2004 was established the Norwegian Centre for Studies on Violence and Traumatic Stress, and later in June 2004 to be implemented the action plan against domestic violence which endorses around 30 goals, namely:
— improving the level of cooperation and knowledge in support services;
— attracting increasing attention from domestic violence and its prevention by changing the attitude;
— ensuring that victims of domestic violence receive support, protection and social support;
— interruption of domestic violence by strengthening treatment programs for perpetrators of domestic violence.
In this context we mention that in Norway operates about 50 shelters that provide protection for children and women physically abused, being allocated: 20 % of local funds and 80% of the state.
According to Law No. 45 from 01.03.2007 on preventing and combating domestic violence, the authorities and institutions responsible for preventing and combating domestic violence in Moldova are:
a) specialized central public administration authorities (Ministry of Labour, Ministry of Social Protection and Family, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Justice).
b) specialized local authorities:
— sections/departments of social assistance and family protection;
— general education, youth and sport;
— healthcare organizations;
— internal affairs;
c) commissions for social problems besides local authorities;
d) centers/services for the rehabilitation of victims and aggressors;
e) other organizations working in this field.
The main regional centers to support women in Moldova are:
— Honor and women’s rights, Balti;
— Association of Business Women Femida, Cahul;
— Association of Gagauz women, Comrat;
— Woman-equal partner Nincesti;
— Youth Resource Center “Dacia”, Soroca.
1) Declaration of elimination of all forms of violence against women. ONU, 1993.
2) Law on preventing and combating violence in family. In: MO No.55-56 of 18.09.2008;
3) I. Creanga, C. Gurin. Rights and fundamental freedoms. Guarantee scheme. Chisinau, 2005;
4) I. Guceac. Basic course of constitutional law. Chisinau, 2004;
5) V. Zubco, M. Avram, I. Margineanu, T. Popovici, R. Botezatu. Protection of human rights in applying coercive measures. Chisinau, 2006;
6) N. Purda. Protection of human rights. Internal and international mechanisms. Bucuresti, 2001;
7) O. Rotari. Criminology. Chisinau, 2011.