FRIGHTENING SILENCE

Convenor of the Hills Domestic Violence Prevention Network Uma Menon said frontline services were concerned by the situation during the lockdown.

“Google searches on domestic violence have increased by 75 per cent. There is an increased risk for women experiencing domestic and family violence due to the physical distancing and self-isolation yet calls for help for frontline workers have decreased.

“Many women who are at risk are being forced to remain in one place for an extended time, losing access to time away from their abusive partners either through the usual school, family or work situations.”

Domestic abuse can be: emotional / psychological, fear, intimidation, verbal, physical, sexual, spiritual, financial, social and cyber bullying or harassment.

Aileen Mountifield founder of the Lisa Harnum Foundation said “the silence “experienced by services during the COVID-19 lockdown service was frightening.

“We were (and still are) very concerned for women and children who have had no access to gaining help due to the perpetrator working from home. In addition, stress from children having to be home schooled.”

The Foundation has established its third “Safe Room” for women seeking help.

The newly established space is at Rouse Hill Town Shopping Centre. The model follows successful “safe rooms” at Castle Towers Shopping Centre and Macquarie Shopping Centre.

• In an emergency call 000
• The Domestic Violence Line: 1800 65 64 63
• 1800RESPECT: 1800 737 732 or visit 1800RESPECT.org.au

For ongoing support and information, the following local services can offer assistance:
• The Lisa Harnum Foundation: 1300 732 848
• The Sanctuary – The Hills Women’s Shelter: 02 9680 2653
• Youth Rezolutions: 02 9680 1201
• The Hills Police Area Command: 02 9680 5399.
• Interrelate 1300 473 528 or Bella Vista 8882 7850
• Community Migrant Recourse Centre (CMRC) 9687 9901
• Hills Community Aid HCA 9639 8620.
• Domestic Violence Service Management 9621 0800
• Ability Links NSW 9685 0293
• India Club 0402 257 588
• Hills Shire Baha’i Community 0421 079 600

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