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Domestic Violence in a COVID-19 Context: Exploring Emerging Issues through a Systematic Analysis of the Literature

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Document pages: 19 pages

Abstract: Extreme events, such as pandemics lead to a rise of domestic violence (DV) and create additionalchallenges for practice. The social work profession as well as many otherprofessions works with women who haveexperienced DV and so it is important to be up-to-date with the emerging issuesbrought about by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The aim of this article is to identify emerging issues related toDV within the context of COVID-19. The article presents the results of a systematic literature search and analysis ofDV within the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. A systematic search of 10 data bases was conducted. All articles in peer reviewed journals discussing DV in thecontext of COVID-19 were included. For the articles to be included they had tobe written in the English language and to be included in peer reviewed journals between 1 January 2020to 9 May 2020. Of the 413 articles initially recorded, 12 articles wereidentified which focused on DV. The analysis of the 12 identified articlesoffers some useful insights. It suggests that lockdown measures imposed bygovernments intensify perpetrators’ power over survivors’ lives, hencereinforcing gender inequality. Furthermore, it indicates that online provision of support might not be themost effective response in cases of DV and identifies appropriate emergencywarning systems. Additionally, the risk of scapegoating COVID-19 for DV is identified. These insights are briefly discussed in relation to practice and policy responses.

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