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Amber Sutton

PhD Candidate in Social Work, University of Alabama

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About Amber

Sutton is a licensed independent clinical social worker and a current PhD student in the School of Social Work at the University of Alabama. Her research focuses on understanding intimate partner violence, reproductive coercion, and maternal health/mortality through an intersectional feminist framework. Overarching themes in Sutton's writings include the co-occurrence of reproductive coercion and other forms of intimate partner violence, solving ethical dilemmas in domestic violence, safety planning with survivors of sex trafficking, and sexual violence. Sutton has worked with survivors of Intimate Partner Violence and their families for the past eight years in a multitude of settings including: residential services, prevention education, and the criminal justice system. Currently, Sutton serves as a member of Tuscaloosa's Trauma Systems Therapy team and is a program evaluator for the Youth Services Institute and Tuscaloosa's One Place. A survivor herself, Amber is interested in utilizing a community-based participatory research approach to identify, improve, and support micro, mezzo and macro-level responses to survivors of violence. Amber has also served as a member of the Board of Directors for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV).



"Preliminary Lessons Learned From Facilitating Group a Case Study in an Alabama Correctional Facility in the Era of COVID-19" (with H. Beech and C. Potock). International Social Work (2020).
""Give Me Proof": A Covert but Coercive Form of Non-Partner Sexual Violence Contributing to Teen Pregnancy in Haiti and Opportunities for Mental Health Intervention" (with Guitele J. Rahill, Manisha Joshi, Caron Zlotnick, Sabine Lamour, Haley Beech, Cameron Burris, and Phycien Paul). Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma 29, no. 6 (2020).

Explores non-partner sexual violence as a contributing factor to teen pregnancy rates in Haiti.


"Intimate Partner Violence and Reproductive Coercion" (with Haley H. Beech and Debra Nelson-Gardell). Encyclopedia of Social Work (2020).

Examines reproductive coercion in the context of intimate partner violence from an intersectional framework. Provides recommendations for practice and policy.

"Advocating for Self-Determination, Arriving at Safety: How Social Workers Can Address Ethical Dilemmas in Intimate Partner Violence" (with Catherine Carlson), in The Routledge Handbook of Social Work Ethics and Values, edited by Stephen M. Marson and Robert E. McKinney, Jr. (London: Routledge, 2019).

Focuses on helping practitioners solve ethical dilemmas when working with clients impacted by domestic violence.

"Safety Planning with Survivors of Sex Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation" (with Abby Howard), in Social Work Practice with Survivors of Sex Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation, edited by Andrea J. Nichols, Tonya Edmond, and Erin C. Heil (New York: Columbia University Press, April 2018), 33-50.

Covers specific strategies for Safety Planning with Survivors of Sex Trafficking and Commercial Sexual Exploitation. Uses literature from the intimate partner violence field. Adapts assessments and survivor-centered approaches to increase safety for both clients and service responders.