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Ford Foundation, and Lora Jo Foo. “Domestic Violence and Asian American Women.” In Asian American Women: Issues, Concerns, and Responsive Human and Civil Rights Advocacy, 129–41. iUniverse, Inc., 2003.


This chapter highlights the lack of information and data about the domestic abuse Asian American women face. There is evidence to suggest Asian women are at a higher risk than other women to die from domestic abuse. Moreover, service centers do not provide culturally competent resources, since they are generally designed for English speaking, American citizens only. Asian American women encounter many institutional barriers to seeking help, like limited shelter space, lack of interpretation, and lack of appropriate services for batterers. There are also laws that affect Asian American women that trap them in abusive situations, like the Immigration Marriage Fraud Amendments (IMFA). Inspire of the passing of the Battered Spouse Waiver in 1990 and the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in 1994 to help deal with this issues, many Asian American women are unaware of the existence of such legal protections. If there is inadequate help for Asian American women in heterosexual relationships, then the problem for Asian American women in same-sex relationships is still worse. There is only one center that offers a program for queer Asian women in the country. It concludes with some transformative initiatives that attempt to change cultural perceptions so that women will not be battered, like the Asian and Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Institute (APIDVI).  This chapter is useful for anyone wanting to better understand the specific issues that affect battered Asian American women access shelters. There is a useful “Recommendations for Action” list at the end of the chapter that details what can be done to eliminate these barriers to accessibility.      


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Race/ethnicity: Asian American/Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander