News Release

Hines studying male victims of intimate partner violence in racial/ethnic minority communities

Grant and Award Announcement

George Mason University

Denise Hines, Associate Professor, Social Work, received funding for the study: "Understanding Male Intimate Partner Violence Victims from Racial/Ethnic Minority Communities." 

Hines will lead a four-phase study on the experiences of male victims of intimate partner violence, with a specific focus on men from racial/ethnic minority communities.  

She will conduct the study in four, simultaneous phases. 

In Phase 1, Hines will conduct a survey study of male Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) victims, including 300 White men, 300 Black men, and 600 Latino men from both immigrant and non-immigrant communities within the United States. The survey will be approximately 20 minutes in length, and will measure their abuse experiences, their barriers to seeking help, their help-seeking experiences with a particular focus on legal communities (immigration, criminal justice, and family courts), and related constructs, such as experiences of racism and micro-aggressions, other trauma history, and mental health issues. Men will be recruited to complete this survey from various online survey panels; to be eligible, the men will have to report that a female romantic partner ever acted aggressively towards them in any way, tried to control them, and/or forced or coerced them into something they didn't want to do at some point in their life. The survey will be offered in both English and Spanish. 

In Phase 2, Hines and her collaborators will interview 50 male IPV victims who are Black and/or Latino, with an oversampling of Latino immigrants. They will recruit these men from targeted advertising on social media; organizations that focus on men’s health, mental health, family issues, and domestic violence; and other organizations that they are affiliated with. Men will indicate interest in being interviewed through a brief online questionnaire and then be contacted by a research assistant (Spanish-speaking, if necessary). The researchers will also specifically target men who are in interracial relationships and/or in relationships with unequal immigration statuses (e.g., they rely on their wife for immigration papers). The researchers will focus their questions on participants' experiences of abuse, particularly as related to race/ethnicity/immigration status, and how marginalization and stereotypes contribute to their struggles with seeking and getting help and recognizing the issues within their relationships. 

In Phase 3, the researchers will conduct a survey study of service providers on their attitudes towards IPV when the perpetrator is a woman, not a man. They will ask participants first to provide a definition of IPV, then do a randomized vignette study, and collect data on adherence to gender roles and gender hostility against both men and women. They will focus on lawyers, judges, police officers, social service providers, mental health professionals, and medical professionals (doctors, nurses). The researchers' goal is to have 750 participants, all of whom will be recruited via online survey panels. 

In Phase 4, the researchers will interview domestic violence agency workers, family law attorneys, other attorneys, psychologists, doctors, etc., who have an expertise in working with male IPV victims. Their goal for this portion of the research is to interview 10 of these service providers to inform a best practices document. 

Hines received $1,023,901 from Alexandra Lozano Immigration Law PLLC for this study. Funding began in June 2023 and will end in late May 2025. She is working in collaboration with long-term collaborator, Dr. Emily Douglas, Ph.D., Professor and Department Head of Social Work at Montclair State University; Dr. Chiara Sabina, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Social Work and Chancellor’s Scholar for Inclusive Excellence in Interpersonal Violence Research at Rutgers University; and Dr. Kerry Lee, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Social Work and Social Research at Bryn Mawr College. 

"Most of the scant research on male victims of female-perpetrated IPV focuses on White men from Western nations. However, racial/ethnic minority men are likely at higher risk of IPV victimization and also likely face unique and additional barriers to getting help. This study will provide ground-breaking research on these overlooked victims to help inform best practices for intervention,” Hines said. 


About George Mason University

George Mason University is Virginia's largest public research university. Located near Washington, D.C., Mason enrolls 38,000 students from 130 countries and all 50 states. Mason has grown rapidly over the last half-century and is recognized for its innovation and entrepreneurship, remarkable diversity and commitment to accessibility. Learn more at


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