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J Community Health. 2009 Aug;34(4):328-35. doi: 10.1007/s10900-009-9161-9.

Associations between perceptions and involvement in neighborhood violence and intimate partner violence perpetration among urban, African American men.

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Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDS, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06510, USA.


Violence disproportionately affects African American men and their communities. Research is needed to inform programming efforts to reduce racial/ethnic disparities in violence exposure, involvement, and victimization. The current study examined involvement in and perceptions of neighborhood violence and relation to perpetration of intimate partner violence (IPV) among a sample of urban, African American men. Participants of this cross-sectional study were sexually active African American men (n = 703) between the ages of 18 and 65 years, recruited from urban community health centers. Age-adjusted logistic regression models were used to assess associations between neighborhood violence variables and perpetration of IPV. In age-adjusted logistic regression models, involvement with street violence in the previous 6 months (Odds Ratio (OR) = 3.0; 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 1.9-4.6), ever being involved with gangs (OR = 2.0; 95% CI: 1.3-3.2), and perceptions/beliefs that violence occurs in one's neighborhood (ORs = 2.0-3.1) were found to be significantly associated with IPV perpetration. Findings demonstrate that involvement in neighborhood violence as well as perceptions/beliefs that violence occurs in one's neighborhood are associated with increased likelihood of IPV perpetration among urban, African American men. While socioeconomics and substance use contribute to high rates of these forms of violence, the relation between these forms of violence and perpetration of IPV was significant beyond the influences of these factors. Findings suggest that future violence prevention and treatment efforts will be most successful by addressing multiple forms of violence.

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