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Emergency briefing: Supporting women, children, young and LGBTIQ people experiencing sexual, domestic and family violence during the COVID-19 crisis

The NSW Women’s Alliance have developed an Emergency Briefing to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic…

“During the COVID-19 crisis, women, children, young and LGBTIQ people are at risk of increased and more severe sexual, domestic and family violence (SDFV) due to further isolation from work, schools, friends and family and other support networks. People may face greater barriers to leaving a violent partner due to a loss of income, fears around the risk of contracting or spreading the virus from accessing services and increased difficulties in making an exit plan and getting the support they, their children and their animals need. People who are in isolation with a violent partner or family member are also much less likely to be able to safely access telephone and online support due to the perpetrator’s monitoring and surveillance.

Aboriginal women, immigrant, refugee and culturally and linguistically diverse women, women with disability, children, young and LGBTIQ people are at even higher risk of experiencing SDFV. This is due to the reduced levels of community outreach and education and changes in service delivery as well as the lack of culturally appropriate, in-language and accessible information and advice.

Perpetrators are using the risk of contracting the virus as a tool of power and control, such as by making threats to force a person out of the home and to put them or others at risk of the virus. Where a perpetrator uses financial abuse, this is likely to exacerbate during this time with additional financial pressures resulting from job losses, insecure work, and increased opportunity for their monitoring and control. A perpetrator’s alcohol and drug misuse is likely to increase during this period of isolation and this too can contribute to their escalation of SDFV…”

Download full Emergency Briefing document HERE