Can the Current Pandemic Lead to More Domestic Violence?

Can the Current Pandemic Lead to More Domestic Violence?

January 8, 2021

Domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence, affects about 40 percent of women and 10 percent of men. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an uptick in domestic violence, thanks to the stay-at-home orders. Although necessary to slow the spread of the virus, being trapped at home means that many victims of domestic abuse are trapped with their abusers during the pandemic in Lubbock, TX.

As a reminder, domestic violence can take many forms: emotional, verbal, physical, sexual and financial abuse are all types of domestic violence. Just because your partner doesn’t hit you doesn’t mean you’re not a victim.

A “pandemic within a pandemic”

There are several factors that make it difficult—if not impossible—for domestic violence victims to leave their abusers during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lubbock, TX. Experts have called this a “pandemic within a pandemic” for these reasons:

  • Lack of economic independence: Many people have been laid off from their jobs or furloughed as businesses shut down. Economic independence is one of the biggest factors in a victim being able to leave their abuser. If they’ve lost access to separate finances, it can be nearly impossible to get away. With hotels closed, shelters at capacity and public transportation similarly halted, there are few options for people to escape abusive situations.
  • Childcare and school: Losing access to childcare and school has increased stress on both victims and abusers. As parents continue to be stretched thin, it has become more difficult for victims to protect themselves and their children. Unfortunately, since virtual school requires the participation of parents, and a stable internet connection, many children are unable to get away from their abusers. Child abuse has been on the rise, too.
  • Barriers to reporting: Finally, there continue to be major barriers to reporting—and being taken seriously. There is no consistent system for reporting, and the police and courts have a great amount of discretion in deciding which charges to pursue. If the victims are minorities, they may be even more hesitant to involve the police.

How to prevent domestic violence during the pandemic in Lubbock, TX

If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, there are a few things you can do. Families and friends can offer their homes as safe spaces and help the victims report their experience. Encourage your loved one to delete their internet browser history regularly, use prepaid phones whenever possible and stash away as much money as they can.

Victims can call the following numbers for assistance:

  • Crisis Text Line (text HOME to 741741)
  • National Parent Hotline (call 1-855-427-2736)
  • Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline (call 1-800-422-4453)
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline (text LOVEIS to 22522, or call 1-800-799-7233)

If you need help escaping domestic violence and filing for divorce and child custody during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lubbock, TX, you need the help of an experienced attorney. The Law Office of Rob Biggers can help. Call us today for a consultation, and get the help you need to escape your abusive situation.

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