Agencies poised for uptick in domestic violence calls
Apr 06, 2020 5:30 am
Abby Hoover is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media local agencies are bracing for an increase in domestic violence complaints during the current stay-home orders. On average nationwide, more than 10 million individuals every year are physically abused by an intimate partner and one in three women and one in four men have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner, according to the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence. The Greene County Sheriff’s Office reported a rise in domestic dispute calls this year, with five in February and 16 in March. “What was noticeable was that nine of the 16 were during the week of March 21,” Sheriff Pete Kusminsky said. That was the first week of the stay-home orders. With mass layoffs and a rise in food insecurity, Community Action of Greene County Executive Director Florence Ohle said this can add to an already volatile situation. “The bottom line is domestic violence happens because a person is a batterer,” Ohle said. “A lot of people are affected by economic crises or unemployment, but not everybody batters.” Community Action has not seen a sharp rise in Domestic Violence Hotline calls, Ohle said. In the two-month period in February and March of 2019, the Hudson Police Department answered 39 domestic dispute calls. In February and March this year, the department received 38. “I have learned that crime is trending down in Hudson, but one stubborn category is domestic violence, which as we see, tends to remain constant,” Police Chief L. Edward Moore said. “I am concerned, though, that the pandemic may cause a spike in it, which may play out over the next few weeks.” For help, Community Action’s Domestic Violence Hotline is 518-943-9211. The 24-hour live-operated English/Spanish hotline for the Violence Intervention Program is 1-800-664-5580. Anyone whose life is in immediate danger is reminded to always call 911. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.