While the number of studies examining domestic violence (DV) in Latin@ populations is growing, research on this issue continues to be limited in both quality and breadth. The various strategies used by researchers to collect data (e.g., phone vs. in-person surveys), the specific questions asked (e.g., number of acts of physical violence vs. the context of the violence), and the social/community conditions where the study is conducted (e.g., new immigration laws) all impact the results of the study. The language in which the study is conducted—including the use of variations in Spanish—can also affect results. Despite these limitations, published research findings can provide a general understanding of various aspects of DV including prevalence, intersecting variables, intervention and prevention strategies. Therefore, in this section we find it important to review what current research tells us. In addition, we know that knowledge comes not only from research but from within our own communities; therefore, we’ve incorporated some of our own findings from Latin@ community focus groups in St. Paul/Minneapolis.
This video, presented by Juan Carlos Areán, Director of the National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families and Communities, a Project of Casa de Esperanza, explores an important question: Why get involved? The sections to the left offer answers to another important question: What can Latino men do as individuals to help end violence against women and girls? If you know of other strategies to involve individuals in this work, please share them with us!
Do you have a successful approach for engaging men in domestic violence prevention? Please, share it with us!
The materials included in this section have been seclected for this toolkit as examples and resources for you and your work for a few important reasons:
- The materials and resources included here represent engagement strategies that have been documented to work well with Latino men;
- The majority of these materials were developed by Latino men, for Latino men and
- The materials are representative of the diversity and strengths of our Latin@ communities.
These materials are only a small sample of the work that is already underway to engage men in addressing violence. We will be continuing to add to this section to include new or additional resources that have been useful for groups working to engage Latino men to end domestic violence. If you have developed curriculum, tools or other materials that you would like to see included in this toolkit, please share with us!
This toolkit is just the beginning. We know that there are many other important aspects that must be considered as we work work to end violence in the familiy including sexual abuse, child abuse, abuse in LGBTQ relationships, and much more. We will add information and highight other programs that promote positive responses to other aspects of engaging men to end violence in the future.
Additional Resources from the
The National Latin@ Network maintains an archive of past webinars on many intersecting topics that can be accessed here. A brief registration form is required to access each recording.
This video, by Juan Carlos Areán, former director of the National Latin@ Network, explores dimensions of traditional masculinity that contribute to the ongoing problem of violence within the family and intimate relationships.
It is very important that as you take action, you also take time to reflect about your own life experience. Most men are trained to be in control of situations and to “fix” things, but in the case of violence against women, it is essential that you ask yourself some questions first. For instance:
- When I was growing up, what did I learn about how to be a man?
- What did I learn about how to treat girls and women?
- How have those beliefs changed over the years?
- Why do I want to be involved in efforts to end violence against women?
- Am I willing to follow the lead of women and other men who have worked on these efforts for a long time? Am I willing to really listen to them?
- How has traditional masculinity affected me and my loved ones?
- What have I done to get away from the dangers of traditional masculinity?
- Am I able to express my feelings freely when it’s safe and appropriate?
- Have I ever used any kind of abuse and violence against women (including emotional, financial, sexual and physical)? If so, what have I done to change my behaviors and be accountable to the people I’ve hurt?
These are not easy questions to answer for any man and you might not be able to answer all of them right now, but as you get more involved in helping prevent violence against women, you will want to come back to these and other questions about masculinity. It is not a matter of blame or shame, but the great majority of men –not only Latinos, but men all over the world- are taught to bury their feelings, assert control and use violence if necessary.
Ready to take action? Take the Pledge...stand with others to create a world free from domestic violence by grounding our relationships (of all kinds) in love, respect and understanding.
You can also learn more by watching the following video and checking out the other resources below:
Spanish language video made by youth in Panama: Pela´os y pela´as te cuentan la violencia de género
How Can a Re-Examination of Masculinity Help Stop Violence Against Women by Oswaldo Montoya Tellería (the full book in Spanish is also available for download.)