Is Alcohol Fueling South Africa’s GBV crisis?

Reach out now, we can help
Home / Posts tagged "Lockdown"

Is Alcohol Fueling South Africa’s GBV crisis?

18 June, 2020Articles, News

The link between alcohol and levels of violence in South Africa has been greatly debated since the 1st of June, when the ban on the sale of alcohol was lifted. Our society experiences massive levels of gender based violence and subsequent to the lifting of restriction of alcohol sale, 21 women have been murdered in domestic violence incidents.

The question thus arises; “Are we able to demonstrate a link between alcohol use and gender based violence? “

In the President’s speech last night, he is quoted as saying, “In particular, we need to examine the effect of alcohol abuse not only on levels of violence, but also on road accidents and reckless behaviour. Several international and domestic studies show clear linkages between alcohol abuse and gender-based violence.”

Unsurprisingly, 85% of the victims of gender based violence are female, according to the United States Bureau of Justice Statistics. Women experience intimate partner violence at a 5-8 times higher rate than men and most of the partner abuse takes place in the home.

Domestic violence as a legal term includes different forms of abuse :

  • Physical acts, such as hitting, punching, slapping or pulling of hair;
  • Sexual abuse including rape, marital rape, treating a partner in a sexually abusive and demeaning way, and molestation,
  • Emotional abuse for example intentional and malicious attacks on a partner’s self-worth, and,
  • Psychological abuse including controlling the partner, blackmail, threatening harm to children, violence toward pets, and intimidation.

Violence against an intimate partner can also include stalking, social isolation (for example, not letting an intimate partner leave the house), and depriving them of resources and necessities.

Various studies have identified substance abuse as a factor in 40-60% of incidents of domestic violence, either in precipitating the abuse or exacerbating it. A study by the WHO shows that alcohol use increases both the occurrence and severity of the violence against an intimate partner. More than 20% of male perpetrators of intimate partner violence (IPV) had used alcohol or drugs immediately before the most recent incidents of violence. The Sonke Gender Justice Project conducted research into the relationship between alcohol abuse gender-based violence (GBV) in 2016. According to their studies, women with male partners who “come home drunk frequently” are 4 to 7 times more likely to suffer violence than those whose partners drink infrequently. Perpetrators of gender based violence are 5 times more likely than non-perpetrators to consume alcohol . Male-to-female aggression is 11 times more likely to occur on days when perpetrators have consumed alcohol. The Sonke Project have has also documented links between alcohol abuse and the transmission of HIV, where – problem drinkers had a 2.0 fold higher prevalence of HIV then non-problem drinkers.

Women in abusive relationships often report that their abusive partner coerced them into engaging in alcohol and drug consumption, although, even where women do not commonly engage in harmful alcohol use, men’s drinking is a risk factor. For example, a four-country study from Asia-Pacific, found if a woman’s partner drank alcohol regularly, they were more likely to experience intimate partner violence.

A study aimed at understanding the drivers of intimate partner violence (IPV), perpetrated by men and experienced by women, shows that there are multiple scenarios in which alcohol abuse leads to increases in intimate partner violence. “Consuming harmful levels of alcohol can lead to more frequent quarrelling about finances and household responsibilities, as money and time are spent drinking. For couples who often drink together, there may be alcohol-related diminishment of cognitive functioning, increasing the likelihood of arguments in relationships becoming violent. Qualitative research in one IPV prevention trial in South Africa, Stepping Stones and Creating Futures, found that one way women sought to reduce their IPV risk was not arguing with their male partner if he, or she herself, were drunk. While not transforming gender relationships, this was an important harm reduction strategy that emphasized how alcohol, quarrelling and IPV are interlinked”.

On the 1st of June, videos went viral of queues of people waiting to get into outlets to buy alcohol. Although less than a third of adult South Africans drink alcohol, almost six out of 10 drinkers engage in binge drinking, according to a 2018 World Health Organisation report. The same study ranks South Africa as the 6th heaviest drinkers in the world. South Africans who consume alcohol, drink the equivalent of 5.4 standard drinks per day. There can be little doubt that South Africans have a problematic relationship with alcohol.

Although this article has focused on violence against women, it should not be forgotten that violence fuelled by drug and alcohol consumption also takes place in same-sex relationships. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered individuals have higher rates of substance abuse than the general population, often due to the prejudice that many of them face in their lives, and this may manifest in violence carried out within their domestic unions.

As President Cyril Ramaphosa said, “We need to draw the lessons from this lockdown and decide how we can protect our society from the abuse of alcohol. Certainly, we need to provide greater support to people with drinking problems, including through rehabilitation and treatment…..Of course, it is not alcohol that rapes or kills a woman or a child. Rather, it is the actions of violent men. But if alcohol intoxication is contributing to these crimes, then it must be addressed with urgency”

Alcohol addiction is widespread due to its easy accessibility and social acceptance. If compulsive and uncontrolled alcohol consumption, binge drinking, blackouts and reckless behaviour under the influence dominate your life, you may be an alcoholic. If you or a loved one needs help with addiction or alcoholism, contact us for a consultation.

Resources :

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/16549716.2020.1739845

https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/274603/9789241565639-eng.pdf?ua=1

https://www.sanews.gov.za/south-africa/murder-spike-noted-level-3

https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/violence/world_report/factsheets/ft_intimate.pdf

http://www.dirco.gov.za/docs/speeches/2020/cram0617.pdf

https://genderjustice.org.za/article/alcohol-abuse-linked-gender-based-violence-increased-alcohol-prices-not-liquor-amendment-bill/

https://bhekisisa.org/opinion/2020-06-11-why-did-south-africa-ban-alcohol-during-lockdown-covid19-coronavirus-evidence/

No Obligation Addiction Assessment

Book a No Obligation Confidential Assessment at your nearest Treatment Centre Today.

Johannesburg Admissions: +27 74 895 1043
Pretoria Admissions: +27 82 653 3311
Close

Stories of Recovery

  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
Left Arrow Right Arrow

Approved Medical Aids

Bestmed LogoBonitas LogoCAMAF LogoDiscovery Health LogoFedhealth LogoGovernment Employees Medical SchemeLiberty CorporateMedihelp Medical Scheme

Are Crossroads Recovery Centres Open During Lockdown?

Reach out now, we can help
Home / Posts tagged "Lockdown"

Are Crossroads Recovery Centres Open During Lockdown?

15 April, 2020Articles, News

The onset of the Coronavirus and its spread to South Africa has made an indelible mark on the social and economic fabric of society. At first it may have seemed like an isolated problem, but the dramatic upsurge in the number of infections during a short period of time pointed to the harsh reality of a national crisis. As such, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the country would enter into a mandatory state of lockdown starting on 27 March 2020.

What Lockdown Means for South Africa

The South African lockdown was recently extended by two more weeks and is currently scheduled to continue until the end of April 2020. During this time, all non-essential services will remain closed. Grocery stores, pharmacies and a select few essential businesses will be permitted to remain open. South Africa’s borders are officially closed, and a strict ban has been placed on the sale of alcohol and cigarettes, as well as dog-walking and exercising outdoors.

What Lockdown Means for Rehabilitation Centres

South Africa’s lockdown has meant that a number of businesses have had to close their doors to the public. Many rehabilitation centres, some of which frequently admit international clients, have also closed during this time. However, due to the nature of rehabilitation and the role it plays as a treatment method for addiction, recovery centres are permitted to remain open, provided that stringent screening processes are followed.

We are Open

Crossroads Recovery Centres will remain open during lockdown and we will continue to admit clients for both substance abuse issues as well as process addictions. To protect all our clients as well as our therapeutic team, we will ensure that any clients are screened accordingly, to ensure that everyone at the facility remains safe. We recommend during this period, that potential clients or their families contact our admissions team in Johannesburg and Pretoria to seek advice on how to proceed with the admissions process. Alternatively, you can request a call back via our website by filling out the form provided – we will ensure that a team member reaches you timeously. It is indeed a challenging time for us all, particularly in the rehabilitation centres field, which is why we’re ensuring that we abide by strict hygiene measures and do everything we can to provide a treatment space that is 100% safe.

If you or a loved one is in search of help for addiction, know that help is readily available at our rehabilitation centres. Contact us for a free consultation and we’ll support you in your journey.

No Obligation Addiction Assessment

Book a No Obligation Confidential Assessment at your nearest Treatment Centre Today.

Johannesburg Admissions: +27 74 895 1043
Pretoria Admissions: +27 82 653 3311
Close

Stories of Recovery

  • The encouragement, love and support from the team at Crossroads allowed me to eventually see that I was worth something - that my life could be turned around and that I could accomplish the things that had long been a forgotten dream.
    Oliver VG
    Read more
  • On the last day of my stint at Crossroads I could only express gratitude towards all who works there. A wise councillor once commented on my question when one is ready for rehab by explaining that when one is ready for rehab, rehab is ready for you.
    Johan B
    Read more
  • I was lost and my soul was broken until I ended up at Crossroads and was introduced to the Twelve Steps. With the help of their excellent staff and amazing support I have recently been clean for 18 months, I could not have done it without them!
    Carla S
    Read more
  • "Just for today I am more than three years in recovery. I have Cross Roads to thank for this wonderful gift. Cross Roads helped me to set a firm foundation in my recovery on which I can continue to build."
    Angelique J
    Read more
Left Arrow Right Arrow

Approved Medical Aids

Bestmed LogoBonitas LogoCAMAF LogoDiscovery Health LogoFedhealth LogoGovernment Employees Medical SchemeLiberty CorporateMedihelp Medical Scheme