Recognizing Domestic Violence Awareness Month during a global pandemic
This year, we are recognizing Domestic Violence Prevention Month during a global pandemic. We know that violence against women is and has been on the rise, as cities around the country have confirmed an increase in police calls and reports. Some women have been forced to shelter-in-place with an abuser. Travel restrictions and financial constraints can limit a person’s ability to move and seek safety. Services normally available to survivors may be reduced, as shelters and other programs reach capacity or face funding cuts. And, the community support systems a woman may normally rely on can break down during a national emergency like the pandemic that requires social isolation. 

Domestic violence affects people of all backgrounds, with one in four women experiencing an abusive relationship at some point in her life. It is rarely a one-time occurrence, and usually increases in frequency and severity over time. On average, more than two women are killed each day by a current or former intimate partner in the United States. Violent behavior is often learned at a young age, and the prevention of teen dating violence is a key component of ending intimate partner harassment and abuse. 

Intimate partner violence is an intersectional issue which can be compounded by women’s pay inequity and other forms of discrimination that create barriers to economic security. In fact, shelters report that more than 70% of their clients stayed with an abuser longer than they wanted because of financial concerns and economic instability. And, sixty-three percent of homeless women have experienced domestic violence.

CWLC provides resources to support survivors and we assist legal experts on domestic violence cases. We encourage you to share the following resources with anyone who may need help. 
– Find our Guide to Domestic Violence Restraining Orders here 
– Access our training Facing Housing Barriers: Gender, COVID-19, and Evictions here
– RSVP for one of our free legal housing clinics here  

To learn more about actions you can take this month to help end domestic violence, we encourage you to access the online activities hosted by the East Los Angeles Women’s Center, including virtual workshops and the 23rd Annual Mujeres de Paz Candlelight Vigil honoring survivors as well as those who have lost their lives to domestic violence.