Conversation piece by Punita Chowbey research fellow at the Centre for Health and Social Care Research, Sheffield Hallam University and part of the Public Health and Inequalities Theme.
Although disputes over finances are known to be common in South Asian families, relatively little is known about the prevalence and severity of economic abuse of women from these backgrounds.
In a new study, I spoke with 84 mothers with dependent children from Pakistani Muslim and Gujarati Hindu backgrounds in Britain, India and Pakistan about their household finances and economic well-being. The women had a range of occupational backgrounds and the majority of them were living with their husbands or with extended family. Out of the 84 women, 33 reported one or more forms of economic abuse.
I found that many women are suffering from economic abuse in silence, although they do not accept it as a natural or cultural phenomenon. Some are fighting back in their own way, but their battles are limited by the socio-economic and legal resources available to them.
The Conversation UK is a not-for-profit, registered charity, sharing knowledge from the world’s best universities with a diverse, global audience of readers. http://theconversation.com/uk