Covid-19 has completely changed the way we live today and will continue doing so in the future. These unprecedented times have put us in a particular situation involving the safety of everyone worldwide.
However, many may not realize that this global pandemic has disproportionally affected women. During the U.S. recession propagated by the Corona Virus, women’s unemployment increased by 12.8% between February and April 2020, reports EconoFact. This is a 2.9% increase more massive than men’s unemployment rate of 9.9%.
While Covid-19 has affected women’s financial security, what has become clear over the past months is the increase in domestic violence. Governments scrambling to enforce stay at home guidelines have forced women to live with their abusers.
However, this is not new as experts state that national disasters have led to higher intimate partner violence. USA Today reports that this is partially due to the economic stress put on both partners at home.
According to Harvard Health Publishing, the percentage of phone calls to emergency hotlines has increased immensely since the spread of Covid-19. The New York Times reports that in China, emergency phone calls have increased since February. In Spain, calls to domestic violence hotlines have risen by 18%. In France, police have reported a 30% increase in domestic violence.
As experts expect this rate to become higher, domestic violence, unfortunately, tends to escalate to domestic homicide. According to the CDC, nearly half of female homicide victims in the U.S. are killed by a current or former partner. Since the pandemic, female homicide has risen. The Harvard Health Publishing reports that femicide has doubled in the U.K. with an 8% increase in Mexico in the first three months.
The global spread of Covid-19 has created the right environment for abusers to control and subjugate women. This has created a global impact that has allowed them to injure, rape, and murder. While some countries are trying to find better solutions to these problems, others have failed in responding to this crisis. The National Post states that only one in eight countries worldwide has created tools to protect women from the effects of Covid-19.
According to USA Today, the Violence Against Women Act in the U.S. has been stalled since 2019. With our government’s resources directed towards the pandemic, funding for the act has become a prayer for women who depend on the emergency hotlines, centers, and shelters.
As of today, Covid-19 has killed at least 1 million people worldwide, reports NPR. But, if we don’t provide the necessary measures to protect women from domestic violence and homicide, countless deaths will result from the direct consequence of ignorance and failure.