In recent years the discussion surrounding domestic violence as a health and social issue has grown and drawn closer attention from various sources. This in turn, has allowed the larger society to start understanding domestic violence as less of a private issue, between family members, and more as a large social issue that requires preventive strategies. Along with this growth in general discussion surrounding domestic violence, scholars and service providers are beginning to look more closely at the specific population groups affected by domestic violence and the types of service provision they require. By making this distinction between the different population groups, i.e. the South Asian population, service providers (police, social services, health care providers) can be personally more aware of the socio-economic factors (immigration, culture, class) affecting victims of domestic violence and provide them with culturally appropriate services. Furthermore, the process of creating and implementing culturally appropriate services will require a greater amount of community outreach initiatives.
Through a review of past scholarly work, aggravators of domestic violence in the South Asian community were identified. Through this process of data collections, various aggravators were identified including post-migration issues such as acculturation, family obligations, and loss of informal networks as well as issues surrounding cultural norms. By identifying these various stressors, a greater understanding of the types of barriers South Asian women face in accessing shelters and other service providers could be created. Additionally, a literature review was conducted of past scholarly works to understand the types of barriers South Asian women faced when accessing shelters and other service providers. The literature review revealed several barriers that these women faced such as lack of acceptance for South Asian values, structural barriers such as racism and financial support, as well as lack of support from personal community.
In order to effectively provide culturally appropriate services to South Asian victims of domestic violence, a greater collaborative approach is required between the ethnic community and service providers. Future shelter community engagement strategies were recommended, along with preventive strategies emphasizing and engaging in the practice of culturally appropriate service provision. By engaging the South Asian community and their cultural and religious leaders, service providers will gain a greater understanding of the needs of the specific ethnic community and the barriers they are currently facing in service provision. Additionally, it will allow the ethnic communities to better engage with the issue of domestic violence in their own communities, and make greater strides towards changing cultural norms and perceptions regarding domestic violence.