Review of Research Evidence on Gender Based Violence (GBV) in Sri Lanka

Perera, J., Gunawardane, N., & Jayasuria, V. (2011). Review of research evidence on gender based violence (GBV) in Sri Lanka. Colombo: Sri Lanka Medical Association.

This document summarises the literature published between 1982 and 2011 on gender based violence (GBV) in Sri Lanka. In our attempt to collate the scientific information on GBV in Sri Lanka, the selection of research was based on pre-determined criteria, viz. to include research and exclude case studies that describe individual experiences. A great majority of the research was on GBV on women. The evidence were classified based on its focus and was included under different themes i.e., Research on GBV at different stages of life of a woman, GBV in different environment settings, clinical manifestation of affected groups and response of organizations towards GBV.
The literature review showed that there was a paucity of research evidence on locally relevant interventions to minimize GBV. The impact of domestic violence on members of the household, morbidity and mortality patterns of affected families, long term psychological and physical development of affected children and the long term effects on the victims were other notable areas where no evidence was found.
Despite certain limitations the committee was able to collate a considerable amount of data that will convince any reader that GBV is indeed a significant social and public health problem of considerable magnitude in Sri Lanka. While GBV includes violence against men and women, in the majority of cases the victims are women. The pattern of GBV in Sri Lanka encompasses physical, sexual, psychological and emotional violence and parallels current worldwide trends. The cumulative impact of violence experienced by girls and women is immense, especially in terms of its impact on their physical and mental health and its consequences, both immediate and long term. It is evident that GBV is currently not addressed adequately by the health care and other relevant sectors in Sri Lanka.

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