It’s difficult to measure how many people in the Rainbow community are affected by partner and sexual violence because, as with other survivors, it can be hard to ask for help or find someone safe to tell.
There are also issues specific to the Rainbow community. Many Rainbow people cannot report violence because of fear of being outed, and many are wary of reporting to the Police or anyone else in case we receive homophobic, biphobic or transphobic reactions. Rainbow communities, particularly trans, gender diverse and intersex people, get missed out of large-scale partner and sexual violence research which measures rates across populations.
New Zealand based research on sexual and partner violence in Rainbow communities is rare. One survey of lesbian and bisexual women in the 1990s recommends funding services for lesbian and bisexual women escaping partner violence. Research and focus groups with gay, bisexual and takataapui in 2006 suggests that sexual coercion between men takes place in situations with age, experience and power differences. In 2007, the Ministry of Social Development called a same-sex partner violence hui with community groups and partner violence specialists.
The Hohou Te Rongo Kahukura – Outing Violence research, based on 18 community hui and a survey answered by 407 people in 2015/16 is the most in-depth research into partner and sexual violence in Rainbow communities in New Zealand. Read the reports and factsheets about that research here.