United Nation Security General expressed his concern over the increasing numbers of domestic violence cases due to the lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Devastating reports coming from all across the globe suggest that due to the lockdown, domestic violence helplines and shelters across the world are experiencing a rise in calls for help.
Domestic violence affects a vast number of women in every state around the globe. The practice of domestic violence constitutes a breach of internationally recognized rights such as, the Right to private and family life; Right to life in certain cases; and the Right to be free from torture and inhumane or degrading treatment.
Where over more than 90 countries have announced lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the silent victims are millions of women living in fear of violence by their intimate partners, along with the threat of the virus—and this is the case in both the developed and the poorer economies.
UN Women suggests that the number would likely increase as security, health and money worries heighten tensions, and strain are accentuated by cramped and confined living conditions.
According to its data, France reported a 30% increase in cases of domestic violence; in Argentina, emergency call for domestic violence cases has increased by 25% since the lockdown. Due to the increase in the number of cases of domestic violence, demand for emergency shelter have also increased in Germany, Canada, Spain and the United States. In the UK, calls to the national abuse hotline went up by 65% last weekend.
As per the report by the UN Women, globally around 243 million women and girls aged between 15–49 have been subjected to sexual and/or physical violence by their intimate partners in the last 12 months. Further, due to the lockdown, women with violent partners are finding themselves increasingly isolated from the resources of help.
Statistics show that,
Domestic violence shelter are reaching capacity, and are unable to take new victims due to lockdown and social distancing measures. Even the police authorities are not willing to arrest perpetrators of violence due to their engagements in lockdown.
For tackling the situation, the United Nation came up with certain recommendations.
The growing number of cases of domestic violence due to the lockdown highlights the devastating fact of how vulnerable women are in our society.
There is a need for addressing the problem, for which the international community should come together to address the situation and we, as member of the society, should stand against this violence.