Helping women at risk of domestic violence during the coronavirus pandemic

“Think of the COVID-19 restrictions as an opportunity to re-engage with your friends who might be unsafe, using your own social isolation as an explanation for why you’re calling more often than usual,” suggests Alison Macdonald, acting CEO of Domestic Violence Victoria. You can help with her safety plan by offering to keep copies of her important documents or storing an “escape bag” for them, Ms Macdonald says.

“You could also agree on a safe word, sign or signal that the person experiencing family violence can use to alert you that they need you to get help; for example, a turned-on porch light, drawn shade, or an ‘I can’t come over on Thursday after all’ phone call,” she suggests.