All of this provides an incendiary situation during the current lockdown, when tensions rise and escape proves impossible.
The call to action so far
On 29 March, specific guidance on Coronavirus (COVID-19): Support for victims of domestic abuse was published and Home Secretary, Priti Patel, confirmed that women can leave violent households to go to a refuge during the lockdown.
Yet, refuges and specialist services have been savaged by austerity cuts. This means, in reality, there is nowhere for women to go when they do leave violent homes during lockdown. And although many services for women survivors have moved online, this does not suffice.
Half of the women in our research cited women’s organisations as the most important place to report Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) after the police.
Specialist services are especially important for migrant women who need support in their own languages and culture.