Social isolation raises concerns for domestic violence survivors
While the coronavirus pandemic has made social distancing necessary, a support service is urging the community to be aware that those in domestic abuse situations are in even more danger due to social isolation.
Lynda Townsend, a service manager of an organisation, said isolation is one of the primary tactics of people who perpetrate violence.
"Enforcing this sense of isolation, and the impact it has on those in family violence situations is something that we are aware of, and unfortunately it is one of the safety mechanisms of the environment at the moment," she said.
"It is a very worrying issue."
Ms Townsend said it was now more important than ever to maintain contact with loved ones, particularly those you have concerns about.
"Now and more than ever it is vital that if you are worried, you must maintain contact through phones or social media to keep those people connected," she said.
"Here at Tamworth Family Support Services, we are considered to be essential, so while there will be changes to how we provide the services we are there and ready for anyone who needs support."
Ms Townsend said while the government's enforcement of social distancing was crucial, there were still ways of checking in.
"At this point, unfortunately, domestic violence, family violence and homelessness do not stop because we have this terrible virus circulating," in fact the situation is predicted to become much worse she said.
"You can maintain the safe distance, by still sitting on someone's front porch and check in with them or pick up the phone and make the call.
"More than ever, we rely on services and the community to still provide support to those who are vulnerable."
Ms Townsend said they had also been struggling to access necessities needed for the shelter due to people panic buying.
"While we are all on tender hooks, there are many vulnerable people who need help and support, so please keep that in mind," she said.
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