'Decreased Funding And Increased Needs': Arizona Domestic Violence Shelters Struggle During Pandemic
The pandemic is putting a strain on domestic violence shelters in Arizona, according to a new survey by the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.
Twenty-nine domestic violence shelters across the state participated in the survey. All of them reported fundraising shortfalls since the start of the pandemic. Shelters also reported needing more personal protective gear and most said they don’t have the space to maintain social distancing.
“One-hundred percent of our shelters have increased needs due to COVID, whether that’s food, whether that’s PPE, whether that’s alternative shelter. So we have this mismatch between decreased funding and increased needs,” said Jenna Panas, CEO of Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.
Panas said survivors seeking shelter lately are often under increased emotional and financial strain.
“So, really you’re seeing survivors’ needs are increased and shelter needs have increased as well," Panas said.
Along with survey results, the organization has published a donation guide detailing needs of individual shelters.