For some people, home is not the safest place. Self isolation and increased stress during COVID-19 will likely see an increase in domestic violence incidents. Research has found that there is often a spike in violence against women during disasters, which have similar features to the current COVID crisis.
During self isolation people will find themselves at home with an abusive partner, and without access to their usual support.
There are a number of things you can do to try and keep safe. It’s also important for people to keep in touch with their friends or family members who may be in an unsafe position
Read through the 1800RESPECT website for information about different types of abuse, and how to recognise the signs of domestic violence, and how to support someone you know. Some key things to remember during this time are to:
If you are in a support role and would like more information or support, you are welcome to contact 1800RESPECT at any time by phone or webchat.
Given that many people at risk are now potentially in 24/7 isolation with the person choosing to use violence, we are handling more calls from people who are in the same house as person being violent.
Our counsellors are experienced in handling calls when the person using violence is still in the home. They will begin every call with an assessment of risk e.g. “Let’s have a safety check before we begin.”
If the person using violence is in the home at the time of the call, we will:
We will help you develop a safety plan: a safety plan is an individualised plan developed with you that takes into account your specific needs.
We are still available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by phone and web chat. Our service is operating as normal during the COVID19 crisis. The duration of our calls are as long or as short as you need them to be.
Our service is available to anyone living in Australia. 1800RESPECT is an accessible service - we can be contacted through the National Relay Service and the Translating and Interpreting Service.