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Impact of sexual violence on disclosure during Home Office interviews

Bogner, D; Herlihy, J; Brewin, CR; (2007) Impact of sexual violence on disclosure during Home Office interviews. BRIT J PSYCHIAT , 191 75 - 81. 10.1192/bjp.bp.106.030262.

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Abstract

Background Late disclosure or nondisclosure during Home Office interviews is commonly cited as a reason to doubt an asylum seeker's credibility, but disclosure may be affected by other factors.Aims To determine whether and how sexual violence affects asylum seekers' disclosure of personal information during Home Office interviews.Method Twenty-seven refugees and asylum seekers were interviewed using semi-structured interviews and self-report measures.Results The majority of participants reported difficulties in disclosing. Those with a history of sexual violence reported more difficulties in disclosing personal information during Home Office interviews, were more likely to dissociate during these interviews and scored significantly higher on measures of post-traumatic stress symptoms and shame than those with a history of non-sexual violence.Conclusions The results indicate the importance of shame, dissociation and psychopathology in disclosure and support the need for immigration procedures sensitive to these issues. Judgments that late disclosure is indicative of a fabricated asylum claim must take into account the possibility of factors related to sexual violence and the circumstances of the interview process itself.

Type: Article
Title: Impact of sexual violence on disclosure during Home Office interviews
DOI: 10.1192/bjp.bp.106.030262
Keywords: POSTTRAUMATIC-STRESS-DISORDER, ORGANIZED VIOLENCE, SHAME, DEPRESSION, SURVIVORS, REFUGEES, TORTURE, SYMPTOMS, THERAPY, ABUSE
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/125472
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