COVID-19 resources on domestic violence

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Briefing on individuals with NRPF who are experiencing, or are at risk of, homelessness and destitution during the COVID-19 pandemic

Project 17

Considers the implications of the COVID-19 crisis for individuals who are unable to access social housing or most welfare benefits due to their ‘no recourse to public funds’ (NRPF) immigration status. Without the safety net of social security, these individuals are at high risk of homelessness, destitution and exploitation, and are therefore particularly vulnerable to the effects of the pandemic. The paper focuses in particular on education, social care, domestic abuse and health. It provides brief outlines of the issues with the current provision of services in each area and the impact that the lack of access to support has on families with NRPF. The paper sets out suggested questions to help local authorities and the government to reflect on their current practices, their responses to the pandemic and how they support individuals with NRPF status, and future plans.

Last updated on hub: 13 July 2020

Impact of easing COVID-19 lockdown restrictions on domestic violence and abuse

Social Care Institute for Excellence

A quick guide developed to provide practical ideas for social care professionals about the impact on domestic violence and abuse as lockdown eases.

Last updated on hub: 07 July 2020

Isolated and struggling: social isolation and the risk of child maltreatment, in lockdown and beyond

National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

This briefing pulls together research evidence to explore whether the conditions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic heighten the risk of child maltreatment in the UK. From the analysis of a range of different risks and issues three main areas of risk were identified: 1. Increase in stressors to parents and caregivers – the evidence confirms that the risk of child abuse is higher when caregivers become overloaded by the stressors in their lives and there are indications that the coronavirus pandemic has increased stressors on caregivers; 2. Increase in children and young people's vulnerability – there are indications that the conditions caused by the coronavirus pandemic have heightened the vulnerability of children and young people to certain types of abuse, for example online abuse, abuse within the home, criminal exploitation and child sexual exploitation; 3. Reduction in normal protective services – there is evidence that the ‘normal’ safeguards have been reduced during the pandemic but social connections and social support can provide a protective effect for children’s safety and wellbeing. The report recommends a national and local response from governments and statutory agencies which includes practical steps such as: providing practical support to parents around income maximisation to reduce stresses caused by financial insecurity; addressing digital exclusion, ensuring all children have access to the technology they need to access school, therapeutic support and other services; comprehensive and long-term funding for children’s services, with at least £2 billion a year invested in early intervention and therapeutic services.

Last updated on hub: 02 July 2020

Domestic abuse: get help during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

Home Office

Guidance on how to get help for people who are victims of domestic violence or know someone who is a victim of domestic abuse. It acknowledges that coronavirus household isolation instructions can cause anxiety for those who are experiencing or feel at risk of domestic abuse and makes it clear that those instructions do not apply if someone needs to leave their home to escape domestic abuse. The guidance covers the following topics: coronavirus (COVID-19) and domestic abuse; recognise domestic abuse; report it; get help if you, or someone you know, is a victim; economic abuse; welfare benefits and housing advice; get help if you think you may be an abuser; support for employers and professionals; get legal help; What to do if you don’t have settled status in the UK. The guidance signposts to additional support materials. [Published 5 October 2018. Last updated 6 August 2020]

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Guidance for housing providers during COVID-19

Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance

Guidance for housing providers on how they can offer safe responses to their tenants and service users where it is known they are living with domestic abuse or where new concerns arise. Housing providers are uniquely placed to access people in their homes and their response to domestic abuse is therefore even more important during the COVID-19 crisis and lockdown. The guidance covers: spotting the signs; availability of specialist domestic abuse support (national and local services and Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARACs)); raising awareness with all tenants; offering a helpful response to survivors of domestic abuse; advice for residents who are worried about a neighbour, friend or relatives; taking action against perpetrators; supporting staff and colleagues; pets; and other national domestic abuse support services.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Responding to the challenges of COVID-19: guidance for practitioners working with domestic abuse perpetrators

Respect

This document offers advice to professionals and practitioners who are working with domestic abuse perpetrators during the COVID-19 crisis. It is based on the learning from conversations with accredited services working with perpetrators and victims of domestic abuse and national and international experts. The document recommends that all practitioners follow their own organisation’s health and safety guidance, safeguarding procedures and business and contingency protocols. When considering any changes to existing service provision, a set of principles, outlined in the Respect Service Standard, remain important. They are: safety first; do not harm; the system matters; support for the staff. The document also signposts to additional resources, advice and support services.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on violence against women and girls

VAWG Helpdesk

A review of the evidence on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic – and similar epidemics – might impact on violence against women and girls (VAWG). Evidence on the impact of the outbreak is still at a very early stage and not yet well documented, given that it begun in January 2020. However, some of the early indications are that there are several areas where women and girls are likely to be at increased risk of violence. These include: increased risk of domestic violence; increased risk of workplace violence in the health sector; increased risk of racial and sexual harassment (both online and offline); increased risk of abuse and exploitation for vulnerable women workers; increased risk of VAWG in emergency settings; and increased risk of sexual exploitation and violence by state officials and armed guards. Experience from past epidemics suggests the importance of a ‘twin track’ approach, combining support to organisations working directly with survivors and integrating VAWG into sectoral responses.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Guidance for Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Programmes: Covid-19 challenges

Respect

This guidance paper helps organisations working with perpetrators and victims of domestic abuse overcome the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. All organisations face problems with service delivery, continuity of staffing and the capacity to support and work with clients. The guide explores how to continue to deliver programmes and support safely; service delivery via phone and video-calling; strategies for calming, de-escalating and containing abusive behaviour; check-ins and case management; supporting delivery practitioners professionally and emotionally; and dealing with new clients.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Children’s social care guide to keeping families safe from domestic abuse throughout the COVID-19 emergency

SafeLives

This guidance is for professionals working in children’s social care including children's social workers, family practitioners and early help teams during the COVID-19 crisis. The guide is structured around the following areas: coordination and multi-agency working; risk assessment and risk management; safety planning; children and young people; forced marriage, ‘honour’-based violence and abuse; perpetrators; child or adolescent to parent violence and abuse. There is an appendix with a list of resources, links and additional reading, including a list of helplines for both adult and child victims and those perpetrating abuse.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

Staying safe during COVID-19: guidance for practitioners working with those who harm

SafeLives

Guidance to help practitioners working with perpetrators of domestic violence during the COVID-19 crisis. The document explores: how to ensure clients get support from family and friends; self-care; general safety planning; structured strategy to help clients de-escalate situations before they become violent or abusive; and supporting support workers.

Last updated on hub: 30 June 2020

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