Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 87–93 | Cite as

Perceptions of Same-sex Domestic Violence Among Crisis Center Staff

  • Michael J. BrownEmail author
  • Jennifer Groscup
Original Article


Crisis center staff help form the frontline in the fight against domestic violence. Therefore, it is important that we understand any biases they may have when addressing cases of same-sex domestic violence. In this study, 120 crisis center staff members were given a vignette depicting a domestic dispute and asked to complete a questionnaire about their perceptions of the incident and the parties involved. We manipulated the sex of the perpetrator and victim. All other aspects of the vignette remained consistent. Because gay and lesbian relationships are often perceived as less serious than heterosexual relationships, we hypothesized that participants would perceive same-sex domestic violence as such. Consistent with this hypothesis, participants rated same-sex domestic violence scenarios as less serious than opposite-sex domestic violence and as less likely to get worse over time.


Domestic violence Crisis counseling Gays Lesbians Homosexuality 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Brooklyn CollegeCUNYBrooklynUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychology, John Jay College of Criminal JusticeCUNYNew YorkUSA

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