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Title: From wreck-to-work : perceptions of domestic violence survivors on employment
Authors: Gauci, David (2005)
Keywords: Family violence -- Malta
Abused women -- Malta
Women -- Employment -- Malta
Issue Date: 2005
Citation: Gauci, D. (2005). From wreck-to-work : perceptions of domestic violence survivors on employment (Bachelor's dissertation).
Abstract: Research on domestic violence in Malta has generally focused on the violence itself, its effects on victims, services offered related to domestic violence and refuges. However, there are certain areas of domestic violence that have still not been researched enough in the local context. The relationship between domestic violence and employment is one of these areas. The aim and purpose of this study was to explore and identify employment barriers encountered by female domestic violence survivors who have left an abusive relationship and sought refuge at Maltese shelters. Survivors at shelters have limited financial resources and choices in life, and thus may be at-risk-of-poverty. Such circumstances could induce them to return back to their abuser. Published literature shows that employment is the surest way out of the 'cycle of violence' since ex-victims would probably gain financial independency. Sound employment policies that are aimed at dismantling employment barriers faced by domestic violence survivors could ultimately provide survivors with more choices how to re-start their lives. Data was obtained through qualitative group interviews based on the concepts of the focus group method. Sessions were held at every domestic violence refuge in Malta. The utilised interview guide had open ended questions that allowed participants to express themselves freely on how they perceived employment and the possibilities of engaging in it. The sample was chosen to provide a varied group and not to generalise data. The findings of the study were reduced into themes which were inter-related. The following are the main findings: • Although survivors have left the abusive home they could still be suffering of violence from their abuser. Violence in the form of stalking and harassment could restrict survivors' employability. • Survivors could be suffering from mental health problems which went undiagnosed. • Survivors with children wishing to work encounter childcare problems. • Employed survivors had supportive employers but non-employed survivors feared that employers could be abusive due to their uncertain situation. • Survivors had limited schooling and this affected their employability negatively. • Their employment prospects seem to be centred on low paid domestic services which require no qualifications, no training, allow for time flexibility and could be performed informally. • Low-paid jobs attracted survivors to informal part-time work as working full-time was identified as being too time-demanding and working in formal employment could provoke the unemployment trap factor. These findings suggest that in order to find and retain employment, survivors have to primarily supersede the effects of violence itself and thereafter to manage the other employment barriers which may be linked to domestic violence, although not exclusively. Some recommendations based on literature review, findings and analysis, were suggested to attempt at making employment a possible and positive experience for women with a traumatised past.
Description: B.A.(HONS).SOC.ADMIN
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacSoW - 1997-2010
Dissertations - FacSoWSPSW - 1997-2008

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