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28.11.2018 | Original Article

The Mental Health Impact of Cyber Sexual Violence on Youth Identity

Zeitschrift:
International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Autoren:
Soheila Pashang, Nazilla Khanlou, Jennifer Clarke
Wichtige Hinweise

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Abstract

Cyber sexual violence (Cyber-SV) is an intentional act to control, shame, and humiliate emerging young women (EYW) and includes all forms of online gender and sexual exploitation with the potential of endangering EYW’s personal privacy and safety offline. Cyber-SV is perpetuated by both male and female who may or may not be known to EYW but who participate in recording, [re]distributing, and observing textual and graphical images/videos, with or without their consent. This paper reports the findings of a qualitative research which relied on anti-oppression and gender-transformative health promotion framework to explore mental health impacts of Cyber-SV on EYW identity. Based on our findings, schools and academic institutions are the primary spaces and places where Cyber-SV against EYW takes place. However, according to research participants, these institutions are not equipped with the knowledge and expertise to intervene, prevent, and offer support. The mental health impacts of Cyber-SY are complex and long term affecting EYW’s personal and social life. Participants recommended the need for more public education and awareness of Cyber-SV for health care professionals. There is also a need for progressive changes in criminal and privacy law that promote gender equity and prevent Cyber-SV against EYW.

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