This week’s results have just come in and reveal the impact of COVID-19 is on the rise with a higher percentage of frontline domestic violence workers reporting:
- An increase in client numbers overall (50% up from 41% last week)
- Increasing complexity of client needs (75% up from 70.8% last week)
- Escalating or worsening violence (50% up from 44.9% last week)
- Violence specifically relating to COVID-19 (50% up from 36.2% last week)
- A sharp increase in violence being reported for the first time (47.5% up from 15.9% last week).
“What we’re observing is a ramping up on each indicator”, says Hayley Foster, Women’s Safety NSW chief executive officer. ‘Not only are we seeing increased client numbers in more locations, We’re also seeing instances where the COVID-19 pandemic is contributing to more extreme violence and abuse as well as cases where violence is erupting in relationships for the first time.”
Whilst client need is increasing, frontline domestic violence workers are under increased pressure to deliver the services women and children need for their safety and support. 82.5% of frontline workers surveyed reported adapting to new procedures in COVID-19 conditions was a significant challenge, 60% reported difficulties in working from home, 62.5% said they were experiencing higher work pressure and 70% said isolation was a key issue in them being required to work from home…