March 1, 2019 – Domestic Violence Law


Anchor lead: What might be the impact of changing penalties for domestic violence? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Decades of progress in domestic violence may be set back with a change in the definition of this issue as strictly a criminal matter, which the Trump administration instituted last year and has recently come to light. Patricia Davidson, dean of the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, says identifying domestic violence as a felony or misdemeanor is far too narrow.

Davidson: One of the biggest things I see in changing this definition of domestic violence to with a felony or a misdemeanor is that the event has already happened. Much of the work in the intimate partner violence and domestic violence area is preventing felony and misdemeanor. The rates of homicide due to domestic violence are huge shifting this definition is altering the paradigm whereas we as health care providers should be preventing these critical events.   :30

Davidson points out that verbal, economic and psychological abuse also fall into this category and may defy categorization as misdemeanor or felony. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.