“During this time of crisis when we are all called upon to stay home in order to stay safe, we should also think of those in our communities who may not be safe inside their own homes.”
Well before the COVID-19 crisis took over our daily lives, the CDC, law enforcement, and service providers across the country had sounded the alarm on the persistently high number of domestic violence cases in the United States. But with social isolation, sheltering at home, and perhaps the financial stress of loss in household income, known triggers in domestic violence, the number of cases continue to rise. So as we go through our daily routine of checking the numbers – the number of positive cases, the number of lives lost, the number of masks needed, the number of jobs lost, we need to consider the fact that domestic violence numbers are far from “flattening.”
“Intimate Partner Violence is too big and complex a problem for any one sector or agency or non-profit organization to take on alone. Now, more than ever, we need to strengthen partnerships and find new ways for the private sector to collaborate with the public sector on this problem.”
With many in-person resources temporarily shuttered, service providers are rapidly adapting to social restrictions by engaging victims and survivors through remote safety planning, risk assessment, counseling, rapid rehousing resources, and basic needs sourcing. For example, the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence (“CCADV”) and its 18 local domestic violence member organizations continue to offer services for victims of domestic violence by shifting to remote advocacy. “We are actively safety planning with victims even under these extraordinarily difficult circumstances, and help is available 24/7 through CTSafeConnect.org,” says Karen Jarmoc, CEO of CCADV. Through CCADV’s CTSafeConnect, domestic violence survivors can access resources and assistance in one place.
Only through strong partnerships across the public and private sectors will we see the staggering numbers decrease. As part of our response strategy, the Foundation is working with partners to spread awareness of the issue, provide resources, and deliver on-the-ground support to some of the most vulnerable populations in our community. This past week, with the assistance of our valued private-sector partners – Litchfield Distillery, Sono 1420 American Craft Distillers, and Hotel Zero Degrees – our team made a special delivery of household essentials, games, and hand sanitizer to the Center for Family Justice, which provides free, confidential crisis and supportive services to survivors of domestic violence, sexual violence, human trafficking, and child abuse in Fairfield County.
Now, more than ever, we need to support those in the field and on the front lines of this issue, and find new ways to make sure everyone is safe at home.
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About Grace Farms Foundation’s Justice Initiative
We believe that each individual has an inherent right to liberty and that it is incumbent upon each of us to use our will and wherewithal to ensure freedom for all.
More than 40 million people around the world are enslaved. Gender-based violence, including domestic violence, is a global pandemic that will affect 1 in 3 women in their lifetime, according to The World Bank. Modern slavery, and violence against women and girls, commonly occurs among vulnerable populations, exasperated by economic inequality and global conflicts. Through our collaborative and multidisciplinary training, policy, and advocacy, our goal is to raise awareness and eventually eradicate these injustices.