‘The disparity is evident’: COVID-19, violence against women and support for Black and minoritised survivors

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  • 1 University of Warwick, UK
  • | 2 Imkaan, UK
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The disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on women and on Black and minoritised groups has highlighted the gendered and intersectional nature of the pandemic where structural inequality has reproduced disproportionately and exacerbated existing gendered and racialised inequalities. The pandemic and subsequent lockdowns led to an increase in domestic violence and abuse; noted to be disproportionately affected at multiple interlocking levels, home and the wider structural context constituted sites of violence for Black and minoritised survivors. Not only were women being subjected to heightened levels of violence and expanded coercive control but they faced greater constraints in seeking help. The decommissioning and closure of Black and minoritised organisations at a disproportionate level under austerity, inequitable funding structures and the simultaneous reinforcement of a hostile immigration environment have closed the door to safety for many survivors. Reporting on research conducted during 2020 with Black and minoritised organisations about the challenges encountered during the pandemic highlights how they rapidly adapted and reshaped survivor-centred support provision, the ways in which survivors experienced and responded to expanded forms of abuse, and the responses they and women received from mainstream service providers and the greater intersectional advocacy this required.

  • 1 University of Warwick, UK
  • | 2 Imkaan, UK

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