Domestic violence during the pandemic: ‘By and for’ frontline practitioners’ mediation of practice and policies to support racially minoritised women 1

Sundari Anitha, Aisha K. Gill*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
115 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article analyses 26 interviews with frontline female practitioners from domestic violence and abuse (DVA) services for racially minoritised women in England and Wales, exploring how these practitioners – who are from the same racially minoritised communities as the women they support – responded to the challenges of the COVID-19 crisis. These specific practitioner perspectives offer valuable insights into the specific ways in which the pandemic exacerbated the intersectional vulnerabilities of minoritised women experiencing DVA. Interpreted through a standpoint feminist lens, the findings reveal how frontline practitioners used bureaucratic discretion both to meet minoritised women’s changed needs during the pandemic in order to enhance their safety and to challenge the exclusions and intersectional inequalities underpinning pandemic policies. The study illuminates the institutional dimensions of frontline practitioner responses to the pandemic and contribute to debates within the street-level bureaucracy scholarship about the nature of bureaucratic discretion exercised by frontline practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460-477
Number of pages18
JournalOrganization
Volume29
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: The original research reported in this paper was supported by the Nuffield Foundation [grant number JUS/43810].

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.

Structured keywords

  • SPS Centre for Gender and Violence Research

Keywords

  • Black and minority ethnic/minoritised women
  • COVID-19
  • domestic violence and abuse
  • intersectionality
  • standpoint feminism
  • street level bureaucracy

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