Online discussion within the project "State response to domestic violence in Ukraine during COVID-19"
On February 23, 2021, a very important online discussion took place within the framework of the project "State response to domestic violence in Ukraine during COVID-19" with financial support Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation.
The online discussion was attended by representatives of public organizations and state bodies and institutions of Ukraine and Bulgaria, whose activities are aimed at preventing and countering domestic violence, providing assistance to the victim: the National Police of Ukraine, the Office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine, the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine, the Ministry of Internal Affairs affairs, the Coordination Center for Legal Aid and colleagues from the Animus Association Foundation (Republic of Bulgaria), who shared their experience of their country's response to domestic violence.
This online discussion is the first in a series of planned discussions and is aimed at initiating dialogue and sharing experiences about how the authorities and civil society are dealing with the challenges of COVID-19 in the field of prevention and combating domestic violence.
It is important to note that according to the National Hotline for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, Human Trafficking and Gender Discrimination, the number of domestic violence calls increased by 30% during the pandemic and this trend has continued since the introduction of the first quarantine until today.
Victims of domestic violence faced the following problems:
- obtaining legal and psychological assistance due to the fact that most government institutions were closed for quarantine, consultations could only be obtained online, and victims needed personal counseling;
- receiving medical aid, due to the fact that medical institutions worked in an intensified mode to fight the pandemic.
The problem of getting to the shelters also became a challenge, since for this you need to have a negative test for the coronavirus or a detailed X-ray of the lungs, and this requires funds and, most importantly, time, which in most cases the victims do not have.
The introduction of the practice of holding such discussions will help to improve the response mechanisms and the provision of qualified assistance to victims of domestic violence.