Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Disability, violence, and mental health among Somali refugee women in a humanitarian setting

Hossain, Mazeda ORCID: 0000-0002-1878-8145, Pearson, Rachel, Mcalpine, Alys, Bacchus, Loraine, Muuo, Sheru W., Muthuri, Stella K, Spangaro, Jo, Kuper, Hannah, Franchi, Giorgia, Pla Cordero, Ricardo, Cornish-spencer, Sarah, Hess, Tim, Bangha, Martin and Izugbara, Chimaraoke (2020) Disability, violence, and mental health among Somali refugee women in a humanitarian setting. Global Mental Health, 7. ISSN 2054-4251

[img] Text (disability_violence_and_mental_health_among_somali_refugee_women_in_a_humanitarian_setting) - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (272kB)

Identification Number: 10.1017/gmh.2020.23


Background There is limited evidence on the relationship between disability, experiences of gender-based violence (GBV), and mental health among refugee women in humanitarian contexts. Methods A cross-sectional analysis was conducted of baseline data (n = 209) collected from women enrolled in a cohort study of refugee women accessing GBV response services in the Dadaab refugee camps in Kenya. Women were surveyed about GBV experiences (past 12 months, before the last 12 months, before arriving in the refugee camps), functional disability status, and mental health (anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress), and we explored the inter-relationship of these factors. Results Among women accessing GBV response services, 44% reported a disability. A higher proportion of women with a disability (69%) reported a past-year experience of physical intimate partner violence and/or physical or sexual non-partner violence, compared to women without a disability (54%). A higher proportion of women with a disability (32%) experienced non-partner physical or sexual violence before arriving in the camp compared to women without a disability (16%). Disability was associated with higher scores for depression (1.93, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.54–3.33), PTSD (2.26, 95% CI 0.03–4.49), and anxiety (1.54, 95% CI 0.13–2.95) after adjusting for age, length of encampment, partner status, number of children, and GBV indicators. Conclusions A large proportion of refugee women seeking GBV response services have disabilities, and refugee women with a disability are at high risk of poor mental health. This research highlights the need for mental health and disability screening within GBV response programming.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2020 The Authors
Divisions: IGA: Centre for Women Peace and Security
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2020 11:18
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 16:38

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics