WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) joined Senate colleagues in sending a letter to the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) expressing concern for the wellbeing of families who face an increased risk of domestic violence due to the coronavirus. The letter urges the ACF and the OVW to take immediate action to prepare for a potential increase in incidents of domestic violence and ensure that victims and survivors of domestic violence continue to have access to needed services.
“We write to express our concern for the wellbeing of families who face an increased risk of domestic violence during the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). We also ask that the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) ensure that the organizations that help victims and survivors of domestic violence have the resources and information needed to continue to provide these critical services during the pandemic,” wrote the Senators. “Many of these programs are administered by your offices and funded through grants authorized by the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act and the Violence Against Women Act. It is critical that your agencies ensure that victims and survivors of domestic violence continue to have access to these vital services.”
Read the Senators’ full letter here.
BACKGROUND: Emergency situations historically have led to increased reports of domestic abuse to the National Domestic Violence Hotline. In addition, domestic violence service providers expect an increase in the need for emergency childcare and domestic violence shelters, as well as for supplies to keep centers and program sites safe and secure.