Jessica Cejnar / Friday, April 3 @ 12:01 p.m. / Community, Emergencies, Health

Assemblyman Wood: Shelter-in-Place Orders During Pandemic Dangerous for Survivors of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault


Del Norte's representative in the state assembly reminded his constituents to reach out to authorities if they see someone who may be experiencing abuse.

From a Friday news release:

SACRAMENTO—Today Assemblymember Jim Wood (D-Santa Rosa) asks the public to raise their awareness of the dangers of domestic violence and sexual assault, especially during this time when people are being asked to shelter in place.

“The recent passing of a woman from Mendocino County, allegedly from an attack by her husband who had been arrested numerous times for domestic abuse, is a grim reminder of the tragedy of domestic abuse and sexual assault,” said Wood. “We are now asking people to isolate and shelter in place in their homes, which should be a place we rely on to be safe.”

For people who are experiencing domestic violence, mandatory “stay home” directives that have been put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19 have, in fact, trapped victims in their homes with their abusers, keeping them apart from people and resources that could help and support them.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline reports an increase in the number of callers reporting that their abusers are using COVID-19 to increase their isolation from friends and family. In a statement on their website, they say “In a time where companies may be encouraging that their employees work remotely, and the CDC is encouraging social distancing, an abuser may take advantage of an already stressful situation to gain more control.”

“Every county in the district I represent – Del Norte, Humboldt, Trinity, Mendocino and Sonoma – has resources to help both victims and the public. I have put many of them here on my website, along with other COVID-19 resources, and would ask that if you know of someone or see someone experiencing or vulnerable to this abuse or assault, please seek advice about how you can help,” said Wood. “These folks are more vulnerable than ever during this period of isolation and greatly depends on others to protect them.”


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