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Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2
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Research gaps in Male-Directed sexual violence Part 2

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During a UN-sponsored seminar on sexual violence against men and boys in conflict Jane Sigmon of the US State Department discussed some of the research gaps that exist in terms of male-directed sexual …

During a UN-sponsored seminar on sexual violence against men and boys in conflict Jane Sigmon of the US State Department discussed some of the research gaps that exist in terms of male-directed sexual violence.

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  • 1. Identifying Research Gaps in Sexual Violence against Males in Conflict Settings A frame for examining: what we know, what we don’t know, and what we need to know Jane Nady Sigmon, PhD
  • 2. First: A Broad Definition of Research • A process of steps used to collect and analyze information to increase our understanding of a topic or issue • Three steps: – Pose a question – Collect data to answer the question – Present an answer to the question • Research questions or hypotheses flow from gaps in the literature and findings of new research
  • 3. Sexual Violence Against Males in Conflict Settings A relatively new field prompts several questions: • Definition of the problem/issue – Sets parameters for scope and nature of the problem • Prevalence – how big is the problem? • Who is affected? Who is vulnerable? • What are the experiences of those affected? • What is the impact? • What responses are being implemented? • Are the responses effective? • How do we prevent this from happening?
  • 4. Definition of the Problem Under the mandate of the Office of the Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, conflict- related sexual violence refers to: Rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, and other forms of sexual violence of comparable gravity perpetrated against women, men, or children with a direct or indirect (temporal, geographical, or causal) link to conflict. The specific focus of this workshop is sexual violence (SV) against men and boys in conflict settings.
  • 5. What do we think we know? • How we got here…Historical context has shaped our knowledge and the development of services re: SV • The lack of attention to SV against males – Sexual violence framed as women’s issue – GBV = VAW Paradigm results in: • Women = Victims = Protection • Men = Perpetrators = Punishment – Research on sexual violence focused mainly on females – Most services for victims of SV address needs of females – Attention to victims of rape in war (2002) has focused mainly on female victims. – Attention to SV against males is relatively new.
  • 6. What do we think we know? SV against males is under-reported and under- resourced. • Why aren’t more cases identified? Barriers to identification by medical & aid personnel • Not trained to see physical sequelae of SV in men • Inexperience with the many forms of SV against males; some leave no scars • Misclassification of injuries as due to non-sexual causes • Gender bias: Belief that males are not susceptible to SV • Not trained in history taking or counseling with men who are victims of SV
  • 7. What do we think we know? Why don’t more victims come forward? • Personal stories of survivors inform us about the barriers to seeking help: • Unique reasons based each person’s experience and situation • Lack of access to help • Trauma/PTSD; Difficulty explaining what happened • Fear of stigma and ostracism • Feelings of shame, guilt, and confusion • Narratives of masculinity that undermine help-seeking • Fear of being charged with a crime: same sex intimacy
  • 8. What do we think we know? • Prevalence – Everyone wants numbers…. – Little is known about global prevalence • 2 recent country-specific prevalence studies (Liberia and DRC) • In last 10 years, SV against males in conflict zones reported in 25 countries – Literature describes where it occurs: armed camps, homes… – Literature on SV against children in conflict zones Focused on children in combatant-related roles Other children?  Is more data needed to demonstrate that SV against males is a significant risk in any conflict zone?  Is more data needed to justify additional resources?  Should building capacity to deal with SV against males be considered a component of any UN response in a conflict zone?
  • 9. What do we think we know? • Who is affected? Direct and indirect victims? – Combatants and civilians – Adults and children – Families and Communities (local and country-wide) • What are the experiences of those affected? – Individuals: documented descriptions of the types of SV • What is the impact on individuals, families, and communities in conflict settings? – Increasing amount of documentation of physical, psychological, and material impact on men – Little documentation of impact on boys, families, and communities and differing impact on men and boys
  • 10. What do we know about? Program implementation – little documentation • What responses are being implemented? – Victim identification and comprehensive services – Legal frameworks and criminal and civil justice remedies • How do we define program effectiveness? • Are programs evidence-based? • How can resource needs be better addressed? Prevention • How do we prevent this from happening?
  • 11. What are the Research Gaps? • What do we need to know that will enable the UN, governments, and civil society to more effectively address SV against men and boys – using the 3 P Paradigm. 1. Prevention of SV against males 2. Protection, care, and assistance for victims 3. Prosecution of perpetrators of SV against men and boys

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