Knowledge of what constitutes gender-based violence among adult residents of Igbo-Eze North LGA, Enugu State, Nigeria and practice implications for social workers
Keywords:Gender-based violence, forms of gender-based violence, Igbo-Eze North LGA, Qualitative methods, physical and verbal abuse
Gender-based violence has been given diverse perceptions and interpretations worldwide. Global concerns investigating and describing the term majorly focus on acts of discrimination, deprivation and injustices meted out to the women folk. Recurrent cases denoting gender-based violence in Igbo-Eze North LGA promulgated by their culture/traditions informed the thrust of this paper which examined knowledge of what constitutes gender-based violence from the perspectives of adult residents in the community. Qualitative methods including focus group discussions and key informants interviews were conducted with 63 adult men and women in Enugu-Ezike, Igbo-Eze North LGA in Enugu state, Nigeria. Findings show that majority of the women described gender-based violence as acts of discrimination, deprivation, injustices; physical and verbal abuse against them while almost all the men expressed lack of knowledge of what constitutes gender-based violence and understood physical abuse of the women as correctional measure. Differing views about acts that constitute gender-based violence exist and these acts are still perpetrated and perceived as a norm in the studied sites; therefore, the study recommends in-depth enlightenment programmes especially at grassroots level on acts that constitute gender-based violence as well as laws protecting the rights of women. Implications of these findings for social workers were discussed.