Women’s Aid attend the Hidden Harms Summit to discuss the impact of Covid-19 on survivors and member services
Today, Women’s Aid will attend the Hidden Harms summit to discuss the experiences of all survivors during the pandemic and understand the scale of the challenge facing life-saving specialist services.
Acting CEO, Nicki Norman says:
“For two months Women’s Aid has been warning that Covid-19 would have severe impacts on women and children experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of violence and calling for urgent leadership by the government in response. The Prime Minister’s Hidden Harms Summit is an opportunity to ensure ministers hear about the experiences of all survivors during the pandemic and understand the scale of the challenge facing life-saving specialist services. 84% of services responding to our survey reported that they have been forced to reduce or cancel one or more of their services due to Covid-19. Whilst we welcome £27million in emergency funding for domestic abuse services, no money has yet reached the frontline and the process has been complex, lengthy and extremely challenging for small services supporting marginalised groups. We have to acknowledge the limitations of this this emergency funding pot as well; the long-term funding we need to have sustainable domestic abuse services is estimated to be at least £393million per year. Alongside a commitment that the government will sustainably fund the national network of specialist services from now on, we also urgently need changes to ensure migrant women escaping domestic abuse can access their rights to equal protection and support. We hope the government listens today to our concerns and to the insights we have from our member organisations across the country and from the feedback we have from survivors.”