U.S. Attorneys Across California Join District Attorneys to Help Victims of Domestic Violence During the COVID-19 Pandemic


SACRAMENTO, October 28 (Punjab Mail)- The United States Attorneys for the Eastern District of California, Central District of California, and Southern District of California and the District Attorneys of Sacramento, Alameda, Ventura, and San Diego counties launched an online outreach campaign to help victims of domestic violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, announced U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott. The United States Attorneys and District Attorneys are joined by Childhelp, a national nonprofit organization aiding victims of child abuse.
The outreach campaign was created to combat unintended consequence of COVID-19 public health measures— an alarming rise in domestic violence with victims trapped at home with their abusers under increasing stress. The National Domestic Violence Hotline has reported an increase in contacts to the hotline during COVID-19. Reports show that physicians are treating more domestic violence injuries and that these injuries are more severe. According to the CDC, roughly 1 in 6 homicide victims are killed by an intimate partner. Research further shows that abusers with a gun in the home are five times more likely to kill their partners than abusers who don’t have access to a firearm.
Under federal law, individuals with domestic violence misdemeanor and felony convictions, as well as individuals subject to domestic violence protective orders, are prohibited from possessing firearms. Earlier this month, the Department of Justice announced it has charged more than 500 domestic violence cases involving firearms during Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, and 13 were brought by the Eastern District of California.
“The U.S. Attorney’s Office regularly works with local law enforcement, and this joint outreach is another example of this partnership,” said U.S. Attorney Scott. “With Childhelp, our offices have come together across California to try to reach as many victims of domestic violence as we can and to help prevent domestic violence by providing resources and raising awareness.”
According to Childhelp Founder & CEO, Sara O’Meara, “The partnership of California’s safety leaders with Childhelp to secure children during COVID-19 is a model for child welfare across the country. All these huge hearts coming together to find children trapped in the shadows of abuse will not only save lives, but create a culture of compassion that will exist long after this virus is behind us.”
The campaign includes a video public service announcement and public awareness messages posted on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms with a new post made each day for one week. The posts provide information for victims with resources, such as 24-hour hotlines and other services vital to reporting abuse. The posts also provide tips for concerned friends, relatives, and educators on how they can help victims of abuse. This outreach campaign follows a July campaign addressing domestic violence and child abuse and exploitation by U.S. Attorney Scott, Childhelp, and the District Attorneys of Alameda, Sacramento, and San Diego counties.