SafeNet and Erie Police speak out on how to overcome domestic violence

Local News

Erie Police say that the call volume has dropped during the pandemic, but not for all kinds of crime.

Domestic calls continue to be a major issue. We took a look at the statistics and where to go for help.

The idea of having to stay at home can be a scary thought for people especially for those in an abusive relationship.

There are places in which an individual can go to for help even in the midst of a pandemic.

On average the Erie Police Department responds to about 15 domestic calls a day. Recently police have noticed a change with those numbers.

“Now that we are seeing call volume starting to come back up to normal, we are seeing a little bit of an uptick in the domestic numbers. We’ll keep watching that we work closely with SafeNet and their STOP program and the Lethality Assessment program that all goes into trying to prevent those domestics from becoming more violent,” said Dan Spizarny, Erie Police Department.

For someone trying to escape their abuser there are obstacles they have to overcome.

“It’s hard to make telephone calls. It’s hard to talk to someone at a shelter while you’re in the same house with your potential abuser. Those types of things are difficult, but if someone does contact SafeNet we have ideas and ways to get out. Don’t stay stuck in a house because you don’t know how to leave,” said Robyn Young, Director of Domestic Violence Services at SafeNet.

If someone is seeking emergency shelter, those facilities are still available despite the pandemic.

“We are sheltering using social distancing. So people aren’t sheltered on top of each other or in the rooms together, things like that. SafeNet shelter is always available,” said Young.

Since the stay at home order began, there’s been one homicide in the city stemming from a case of domestic abuse.

If you are struggling and want to reach out for help, you are encouraged to call SafeNet. Their number is 814-454-8161.

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