Jenn Glinski, a Visiting Scholar from the University of Glasgow in Scotland, is currently based at the School of Social Work's Center for Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC). Glinski shares details about her research and plans for her time at Rutgers.
Tell us about your role as Visiting Scholar.
My role as a Visiting Scholar entails meetings with Dr. Judy Postmus to discuss my research and progress in the UK, networking with other academics and researchers who are currently working on financial abuse, presentations to VAWC and the School of Social Work, outreach to other related departments to disseminate my research and practical experiences. Every Monday starting on January 27 I will be doing a takeover of the VAWC Twitter account to spearhead “Money Mondays”; the takeover will be utilized as a platform to raise awareness about financial abuse and the Center’s work. This visit really represents a great opportunity to learn from the leading experts in the field and exchange information on what work is currently being conducted in the UK.
Why did you choose to collaborate with Rutgers (as opposed to other institutions)?
I chose to collaborate with Rutgers because of the expertise of the faculty on financial abuse. Dr. Judy Postmus is one of the leading global experts on financial abuse and has worked with many other academics and practitioners on highlighting and measuring this under-recognized form of abuse. Currently there is very little research being conducted on financial abuse in the UK and I am one of a handful of researchers exploring it. Therefore, coming to Rutgers and working with Dr. Postmus meant that I could learn from her expertise and explore my research and findings in greater detail.
What goals do you hope to achieve in the next few weeks?
I am hoping to meet with as many people as possible to share the work that the UK is currently doing around domestic and financial abuse and learn about work being conducted in the US. The goal is to exchange best practices in this regard. I would really like to foster connections that will be useful for all parties and hopefully lead to further collaborations beyond my placement. Beyond this, I hope to start a conversation about how we, as researchers, can raise more awareness about financial abuse and work towards impacting policy and legislation.
Tell us about your research.
My research focuses on the financial costs of separating from an abusive partner and the support available to survivors around those costs. Societies across the world still ask female survivors of domestic abuse, "why didn’t you just leave?" and the answer to this question is very complex. There are very serious financial considerations to "just leaving," especially in a relationship in which financial abuse has occurred or was used as a main tactic of coercion and control. My research highlights the survivors’ experiences of finances throughout the relationship, at the point of separation and thereafter. Women across the world are still financially disadvantaged compared to similarly situated men and financial abuse exacerbates and deepens this inequality, leaving survivors of domestic abuse financially worse off and with very little support to remedy that.
What drew you to this field of inquiry?
I have always focused my studies and work on violence against women and domestic abuse in particular. However, for me, financial abuse is personal. Friends and family were experiencing a form of abuse that was not listed in my textbooks or spoken about by women’s organizations and charities. The lack of financial resources, or access to financial resources, featured heavily in their abuse and seemed to escalate after they managed to separate from their abusers. No one really seemed to focus on their experiences, and I wanted to change that.