vsharma1Ben HastyMediaNews GroupReading Eagle via Getty Images_end domestoc violence Ben HastyMediaNews GroupReading Eagle via Getty Images

End the Pandemic of Violence Against Women

Pandemic-related lockdowns have increased the risk of violence against women and girls. Many governments have made more resources for survivors available as part of their pandemic-relief efforts, but this assistance can do little to prevent future violence without programs to address its root causes.

CAMBRIDGE – Violence against women and girls increases during periods of crisis. So, it should come as no surprise that COVID-19 has added to the risk of gender-based violence. Even before the pandemic, one in three women worldwide reported experiencing physical and/or sexual violence by an intimate partner. But, by confining women at home with their abusers, pandemic-related lockdowns have increased their exposure to violence. Lockdowns have also contributed to economic stress, and diminished women’s access to the resources and support systems that help them escape abusive relationships.