While many people are fortunate enough to think of home as a safe place, that is often not the case for victims of abuse. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. residents are being instructed to stay home in order to stop the virus from spreading. Abuse victims, now being forced to stay at home with their abusers, are at a great risk.
Joan Harris, the Associate Director of Advocacy & Community Services at Safe Passage, Inc., explains the threat domestic violence victims are experiencing during this time. She says, "Domestic violence is probably worse at this time because there's so much stress happening in a household and I know from working with the clients that when there's stress, that the clients often see an increase in violence happening to them."
While in-person counseling has been forced to come to a halt, Safe Passage Inc. is still providing services to their clients via email and telephone. COVID-19 restrictions are definitely posing operational challenges, but Harris wants her clients to know that support is still available. She explains, "If they have the ability to call, we want them to call. If they have the ability to send an email, we want them to send us an email. We want them to reach out for support and know that support is available to them."
Safe Passage Inc. accepts donations.
Safe Passage Inc. serves:
Domestic Violence: York County, Chester County, Lancaster County
Sexual Violence: York County, Union County
Child Abuse: York County
24 Hour Hotline: 803-329-2800
If you are outside of those counties, click here to find a member organization that can assist you in your area.
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)