WRAP recognizes October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month
The women and men rape assistance program also known as WRAP helps over 2,000 people a year leave domestic violence situations in west Tennessee.
But during the pandemic they had to figure out different ways to help from a far.
“March, April, and May we saw a decrease in the people, the victims that we served, however our crisis contacts quadrupled during this time", says WRAP Domestic Violence Response Manager, Lynnsey Park.
They used phone calls, video calls, and social media platforms to keep in touch with people that needed their help.
Response team members say being stuck at home because of the pandemic is not good for domestic violence situations.
“We saw an increase in frustrations, right? So, homes that already experience domestic violence did see a great increase in those issues", added Park.
Another way WRAP helps victims is through safe homes that are available for people fleeing violent situations, but they saw a decrease in people wanting to live there because of how the virus continues to spread. Now they are using federal funds from the CARES Act to make changes to make sure victims feel safe.
“Process of turning our safe home bedrooms into self-contained units, so they will be like mini suites", Regional Domestic Violence Response Manager, Bridget Lockett, explains the change.
WRAP is celebrating domestic violence awareness month by spreading purple around west Tennessee and sharing information about how to get out of a unsafe environment.
Regional Domestic Violence Response Specialist for WRAP, Deborah Brackins says, “it is very important if you are in a domestic violence relationship when you’re trying to end it. That’s one of the services that we provide. A safety plan with the individual, so they can safely make an exit.”
Imani Williams for 39 News, in Jackson.