Over 4.5 Million Women in the United States Today Report Having Been Threatened With a Gun by an Intimate Partner
NEW YORK — Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund today released a report detailing the intersection of domestic violence and gun violence. The report highlights the widespread impact that gun-related domestic violence has on women and families in the United States. Over 4.5 million women report having been threatened with a gun by an intimate partner, and every month, 70 women in the U.S. are shot and killed by intimate partners. While actions at the federal level, including reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act and addressing the intimate partner loophole, will help close significant gaps that for decades made it easy for domestic abusers to access guns, the report shows that there is more work to be done to save lives and address domestic violence and gun violence. States need to strengthen laws that prohibit abusers’ access to guns and require them to turn in existing guns, which are proven strategies to save lives.
“Our leaders have recently taken meaningful steps toward addressing domestic violence and gun violence,” said Sarah Burd-Sharps, Senior Director of Research at Everytown for Gun Safety. “However, research makes it clear that there is still more work to be done to keep firearms out of the hands of domestic abusers and prevent domestic violence involving a firearm. We need stronger policies that disarm abusers at every level to protect victims and survivors of gun violence.”
“No one should have to endure the pain and trauma that comes when domestic violence and gun violence intersect, and this report underscores just how pervasive this crisis truly is,” said Doreen Dogden-Magee, an Everytown Senior Survivor Fellow, volunteer with Oregon Moms Demand Action, and a gun violence survivor whose sister-in-law, Laura, and three nieces, Sarah (5), Rachel (3), and April (6 months) were shot and killed by Laura’s husband, their father. “We cannot forget the toll domestic violence involving a firearm takes on our country, and must continue striving towards real change.”
Key findings from the report:
- Every month, an average of 70 women in the U.S. are shot and killed by intimate partners and nearly one million women alive today have been shot or shot at by an intimate partner.
- Over 4.5 million women reported being threatened with a gun by an intimate partner.
- Black, American Indian/Alaska Native, and Latina women are victims of intimate partner firearm homicide at the highest rates. These communities are marked by histories of racial discrimination, often intertwined with higher poverty rates, and have less access to protective services that reduce the risk of lethal violence.
- Black women are three times as likely as white women to be fatally shot by an intimate partner.
- American Indian/Alaska Native women are nearly four times as likely as white women to be fatally shot by an intimate partner.
- More than four in ten Latina homicides are committed by intimate partners and a firearm is used in nearly 60 percent of these deaths.
- Homicide is the leading cause of death for pregnant and postpartum women compared to all other maternal mortality causes. In 2020, 81 percent of these homicides were committed with a gun and the majority of them occurred at home, implying the nexus of domestic violence and guns.
- Black women and girls and young women are disproportionately impacted by pregnancy-associated homicides.
The full report is available here. To speak with a policy expert, Moms Demand Action and/or Students Demand Action volunteer, please do not hesitate to reach out. If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence or intimate partner violence, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, available 24/7, for confidential assistance from a trained advocate. If you’re unable to speak safely via phone, you can chat online at thehotline.org.