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The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated gender violence 

Misogyny is a virus that has been spreading all over the world for decades

The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated gender violence 
Gender violence and domestic violence are on the rise amid the coronavirus pandemic - Photo: File Photo/EL UNIVERSAL
English 14/04/2020 09:24 Mexico City Editorial Actualizada 09:35
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The COVID-19 pandemic has evidenced the fragility of the healthcare system. Amid a public health crisis, no country can handle the increase in the demand for medical attention. Furthermore, the current situation has also uncovered another pandemic: gender violence.

For thousands of women worldwide, confinement represents the opportunity to spend time with their families without having to worry about making to school or work on time. For many others, the quarantine represents a risk since they will have to spend a lot of time with their aggressors, with scarce possibilities to ask for help. 

However, this situation is not exclusive to Mexico and it’s a phenomenon that affects women all over the world. According to an article published by EL UNIVERSAL today, there has been a surge in domestic violence cases during the quarantine, a measure that is necessary to halt the spread of coronavirus.

For example, the calls to report domestic violence have increased in the United States; the French government informed that domestic violence reports increased by 32% in one week; in Australia, internet searches about help for domestic violence victims increased by 75%.

Recommended: The COVID-19 pandemic could exacerbate domestic violence

In Latin America, the Colombian Observatory of Women documented a 250% increase in reports of violence against women, especially during the first two weeks of the quarantine; in Brazil, gender violence cases increased 18%; in Argentina, women calling for help increased by 60%.

In Mexico, the phenomenon is similar. Femicides still take place and the calls to 911 to report violence are increasing.

We’ve all seen official messages to halt the spread of COVID-19 and calls to stay home but we have very little information about programs to help women who are victims of domestic violence. Misogyny is a virus that has been spreading for decades but authorities and society have been trying to contain it in recent years. However, the problem is that when women are quarantined, it can regain its force. 

Although Mexico’s priority is to prevent more coronavirus cases, we cannot forget about gender violence

Recommended: Domestic violence has been normalized in Mexico

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