Research on Violence Against Alaska Native Women (2004)

Randy Magen, PhD


This project examined factors associated with the prevalence and incidence of violence against Athabascan women in the Copper River Basin. The goal was to identify elements at the individual, community, and service system levels that influenced the protection provided to Native Alaskans experiencing violence against women.


Funding for this project was provided by the National Institute of Justice. The Copper River Native Association and the Mt. Sanford Tribal Consortium were community partners in this project, and were the sole health care providers for the eight rural villages in the Copper River Basin. The Institute for Health Studies was responsible for providing administrative and technical support, including data management.


Data was collected through interviews, a survey, and a review of official records. Ethnographic interviews of Athabascan Elders were provide important insight into traditional attitudes, beliefs, and practices of the Athabascan people related to violence against women. A victimization survey of Athabascan women provided a more accurate indication of the frequency, severity, and consequences of violence against Athabascan women than was possible using official agency statistics.