British Virgin Islands

Monday, Aug 02, 2021

Domestic violence more probable during curfew, Gender Affairs Office calls for peace

Domestic violence more probable during curfew, Gender Affairs Office calls for peace

As the territory continues its six days of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Gender Affairs is calling for peace within households where acts of domestic violence are highly probable.

Gender Affairs Coordinator Tara Sue Morgan made the call while noting that that long periods of isolation can spark a resurgence of incidences in households which have a domestic violence history.

“Due to the fact that persons are now isolated within households for a longer period of time than usual, sharing the same space, food, utensils, necessities, etcetera, there will be increased tension within households,” Morgan stated.

She further said victims who are dependent on their abuser are often manipulated during periods of crisis, as they usually have limited alternative options to turn to.

“They may even threaten to throw their victims out of their home so they get sick or if they get sick. The victim will then want to comply with everything to ensure they have somewhere to live. As a result, the emotional turmoil and confusion can make it even more difficult for a victim to respond to the situation,” Morgan explained.

Community effort needed during pandemic

The Office of Gender affairs is, therefore, asking residents to take a number of measures to ensure the safety of their neighbour who may be experiencing such harsh realities during this period.

These measures include being vigilant and reporting any suspected cases of domestic violence to the police during the curfew and providing accurate and supportive care and messaging to victims to enhance their safety, dignity and rights.

Coordinator Morgan also said that meaningful engagement of both females and males of all ages should be supported at the community level. She said this is to ensure.


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