ICRW has partnered with The International HIV/AIDS alliance to undertake research and technical assistance for the mitigation of intimate partner violence (IPV) against male-to-female transgender and Hijra (MTH) individuals funded by the Global Fund Round 9-supported Pehchan programme. The project aims to find out what factors lead to IPV against MTH individuals, what its health consequences are, and what interventions map help create conditions for reduction in IPV and health vulnerabilities of MTH individuals in the long run. Further, it will investigate the “violence prevention potential” of encouraging MTH community discourse to end the normalization of IPV, facilitate the reporting of the problem and ways to respond to the problem through legal protection and counseling. ICRW partnered with The International HIV/AIDS alliance to expand existing knowledge on this subject in India.
Violence against MSM, transgender and Hijra (MTH) individuals in India is to this day a very real problem and a human rights concern as it is known to be a driver of the HIV epidemic. A clear stigma in India has induced discrimination and violence in various forms against all sections of these MTH communities. Different programs have previously attempted to study the violence and trauma faced by MTH populations. It was found that not only is this discrimination shown in terms of physical violence but it is also shown to induce emotional pain through community wide verbal abuse, blackmail and extortion. All of this previous documentation however is not enough to adequately demonstrate the extent and nature of the violence faced by MTH individuals in India.
The current research study will seek to validate the findings of the earlier research along with extending it in terms of factors that lead to IPV against MTH individuals and the consequences of such violence. The study will take place over a period of 15 months where each participant will go through three phases ending with the implementation of community discourse activities such as Facebook outreach, helpline counseling opportunities (to facilitate greater IPV reporting) and the implementation of legal protection for victims of verbal and physical abuse.
The objectives of this project are as follows:
- Increased awareness and recognition of IPV among MTH individuals;
- Increased self-acknowledgment and reporting of IPV by MTH;
- Improved self-esteem in participants to deal with IPV;
- Decreased endorsement of gender inequitable attitudes; and
- Increased attitudes of zero tolerance for IPV among MTH