This study investigated the effects of intimate partner violence on the health and employment status of low-income women.
Findings from this study on the effect of intimate partner violence (IPV) on the health and employment status of low-income women include the following: no differences in employment stability over the 3-year period of the study were found among most of the different levels of abuse experienced by the women, with women who recently experienced abuse having the worst employment outcomes; women who were chronically abused had the worst health outcomes among all groups of women; and women's health status did not mediate the relationship between abuse and employment stability over the 3-year period of the study. This study had two objectives: to examine whether recency and chronicity of IPV affected the health and employment status of low-income women, and whether health would mediate the relationship between abuse and employment stability over time. Data for the study were obtained from a sample of women, n=1,072, drawn from the population of TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) recipients in Illinois in June 1998. The women completed three annual interviews over the course of the study period and information was obtained on sociodemographic variables, social support, intimate partner violence, health problems, and human capital factors in the women's lives. The women were grouped according to five different abuse patterns: None, Past only, Recent only, Intermittent, and Chronic. Analyses of the data indicate that recency and chronicity of IPV need to be accounted for when examining the relationship between IPV and employment status. In addition, the findings suggest that health status does not mediate the effects of IPV on employment stability. Study limitations are discussed. Tables and references