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Thinking outside the box for those who need protecting | COVID-19

Family Law | Private Client
19 March 2020

By now, we are all well versed on the basic guidance given in relation to COVID-19 and how we as islanders can slow the curve of the virus in Jersey. We are also aware that those islanders who are over 65 years old are considered to be vulnerable to the virus, thus social distancing and/or isolation has been recommended.

Isolation of islanders and the potential effects on those suffering from domestic abuse

But, what about those islanders who are now self-isolating or are working remotely from home in order to help slow the curve and are living with a violent and abusive partner?

Over the last few days, we have read a lot of social media posts on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram in relation to vulnerable people living at home with abusive partners, and the anticipated rise in incidents due to parties spending an increased amount of time together.

Charities across the globe following the outbreak of COVID-19 have voiced their concerns on the impact that social isolation measures will be having on relationships. It’s believed that the combination of uncertainty, growing economic concerns, stress and anxiety caused by isolation is creating a ‘perfect storm’ for abusive relationships.

In China the number of reported domestic abuse cases tripled in February 2020 compared to the previous year, which Activists are saying is a as result of the enforced lockdown due to COVID-19. We have also been reading of a number of increased incidents in New Zealand, Italy and the United States since the countries’ advice to many of its citizens has been to stay at home.

We have read numerous posts regarding domestic abuse where both men and women have reported that their abusive partner is taking advantage of the isolation recommendations in order to; emotionally, financial or physically control them. Its envisaged that many men and women during unprecedented times such as this, may be feeling even more anxious about spending an increased amount of time at home.

Who to contact if you are suffering from domestic abuse, or you know someone who may be suffering

For most people, our homes are our safe havens, however, that is simply not the case for everyone. We must not forget those fellow islanders who may be experiencing a spike of violence and abuse at home during this time from an abusive partner.

Whether you are personally suffering from domestic abuse, or you have concerns that a neighbour may be suffering, or you have concerns about a colleague who is working from home we would recommend that you contact one of the following agencies for support and guidance. If the situation is immediate, we do advise you to call the States of Jersey Police 999.

Services for guidance in relation to domestic abuse

For further information and/or guidance our Family Team may be able to help. Please do not hesitate to call 630530 or email us on familylaw@parslowsjersey.com

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