Challenges Faced by Immigrant and Refugee Women Who Experience Abuse

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Issues abused immigrant and refugee women deal with include:

  • Fear of jeopardizing Canadian status

  • Lack of information about Canadian laws and their rights as women

  • Fear of losing their children for good

  • Fear of being ostracized from their community

  • Fear and distrust of police

  • Lack of professional support from home community

  • Fear of vulnerability without male protection

  • Experiences of prejudice, discrimination, or racism when they have interacted with various institutions

  • Lack of English language skills

  • Isolation from others

  • Fear of bringing shame to family

  • Lack of knowledge about or experience with social service agencies

  • Lack of availability of culturally appropriate services

  • Difficulties living within a shelter environment.  For example:

    • Racial issues

    • Food issues

    • Differences about what is socially accepted behaviour

    • Child care/parenting issues

    • Feels like another prison or refugee camp

  • In many cases, low economic status.