3.1.2 Voluntary participation

Whereas the majority of the participants in social training programs are male, heterosexual perpetrators and is court mandated, the majority of lesbian women participate voluntarily. Most programmes for lesbian women are based on voluntary participation since only view cases are reported to police or mandated by court. Nevertheless, more male court mandated perpetrators than ‘volunteers’ finish the training program.

Lesbian women are reluctant to report battering to the police and thus not a lot of cases are going to court. Some reasons are:

  • Fear of depreciating and homophobic treatment of police officers or judges
  • Fear that perpetrator might be exposed to depreciating and homophobic treatment
  • Fear of confirming prejudice against lesbians
  • Fear of revealing one’s same-sex lifestyle
  • Emotional dependency

Since working with lesbian perpetrators means to work mainly with volunteers, it is indispensable to include a ‘follow up’ and an evaluation into the concept to prevent relapse.

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Funded by:and
European Commission and the German Federal Ministry of Family, Seniors, Women and Youth.

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