It’s been over a year since the global pandemic hit the world. In all this time, it continues to wreak havoc, leaving devastation and misery in its wake. And while certain protocols like lockdown were meant to help curb the virus, for some, it only serves to compound their suffering. For instance, cases of domestic violence and femicide have shot up significantly as the stay-at-home campaign intensified.
This has confirmed the unfortunate reality that while the home is supposed to be the safest place to find comfort and safety, it is the most dangerous place for some of the vulnerable members of society.
Domestic violence is closely linked to power and control. When vulnerable men and women are forced to stay for long periods in the same space as their abusers, the situation can only grow worse.
Under such circumstances, domestic abusers find unrestricted opportunities to continue their imposing surveillance and harassment. And because of their continued presence at home, the victim’s ability to call for help is further suppressed.
These unfortunate realities have seen an upsurge in psychological, physical, and sexual abuse and femicide all over Europe. In France for example, authorities reported over 46% of domestic violence cases. In Spain, femicide cases continue to rise even after a woman was brutally murdered by her husband in front of the children. Cyprus recorded over 35% of helpline calls for emergencies while England and Italy had the highest record of distress text messages and emails.
According to the statistics, ‘Violence against the person’ has increased remarkably by 2018 to 2020. Crimes like, criminal damage and arson, public order offences, other offences, sexual offences and miscellaneous crimes increased gradually by the same years but Violence against the person has increased immensely in the past one year. Hence, as clearly shown by the statistics, lockdown imposed due to the pandemic is one of the main cause of numerous people facing domestic violence.
Voices of Reason
The consequences of lockdown have been devastating. The rise in domestic violence has attracted international authorities including UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
Guterres has since condemned the horrifying increase in domestic violence and urged governments to make women’s safety a top priority. Other voices of reason included Everlyn Regner, the European Parliament’s Committee on Women’s Rights. Regner declared that they will not leave Europe’s women alone. In response to this, several European governments are working to develop new strategies that they hope will curb both the pandemic and domestic violence. If you are facing any domestic violence or you are unaware of it, you can always go to these websites mentioned below. Please go on the links to contact the helpline number.
Article Writer- Terry Ekhosuehi
Editorial Assistant- Abhishek Khanpara
Chief Editor- Jumana N Mohamed
Publisher- Supankan K