Canada's Assaulted Women's Helpline took over 20,000 calls from September 1 to December 21, a nearly fifty-percent increase from the same time last year.
According to Yvonne Harding, the manager of resource development at the organization, the pandemic's lockdowns saw spikes starting even during the first lockdown.
"It's very disturbing to know that there are so many women who are in this really precarious situation," Harding told The Canadian Press. "There may have been limited support for them beforehand, but at least they had outlets."
Between April 1 and September 30, the CAWH took 51,299 calls compared to 24,010 during the same period in 2019.
"Everything closed overnight, and our crisis lines lit up," Harding said.
"We saw a range of calls. We saw those who were feeling immediately threatened because their situation had escalated, and we saw those for whom fears were kicking in, because things were starting to change and they were used to being able to access community supports in person that were no longer available to them."
According to data collected from 17 police forces, "domestic violence calls rose by 12 percent between March and June compared to 2019" during the same period.
Assaults between family members and sexual assaults by family members also saw drops at 4.3 percent and 17.7 percent, respectively.
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