Domestic Violence has always been a problem in the United States. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reports that every minute, 20 people are abused by an intimate partner. Meanwhile, with families confined to their homes this year, rates of domestic and intimate partner violence have shot up. According to Jeneen Klippel, Director of Development and Public Relations at Gateway Domestic Violence Services in Aurora, “Domestic violence is the pandemic within the pandemic.”
“Numbers are skyrocketing because with stay-at-home orders, more people working from home, layoffs and furloughs, survivors are generally ‘stuck’ with their abuser when they otherwise might get breaks here and there,” said Klippel. “The pandemic is yet another tool of oppression that abusers are using to take power away from their victims and take away control of their own life.” There have even been numerous reports that abusers are denying victims access to “PPE items, their insurance card, family members who might be sick, and access to their own doctors.”
There are several non-profits around Colorado providing crisis hotlines, emergency shelter, and other resources for families fleeing domestic and intimate partner violence:
Where: 1649 Downing St., Denver
What they do: SafeHouse provides safe shelter, basic necessities, extended stay housing, trauma-informed counseling and other services specifically for survivors of domestic violence. They “serve survivors across all gender identities, ages, socioeconomic statuses, abilities, and sexual orientations; and empower survivors to guide their own healing,” said Chief Development Officer Shannon Boltz. Their services are 100% free of charge.
COVID-19 updates: Their 24-Hour Crisis Line and Extended Stay Program is fully operational. They’re also offering limited capacity Emergency Shelter and remote counseling services during the pandemic. SafeHouse has seen “an increase in the intensity of the [crisis line] calls and the frequency of reports of physical violence… The economic stress and heightened tension being felt by the entire population can lead to intensified physical violence,” said Boltz.
How to access them: 24-hour Crisis and Information Line at 303-318-9989. This crisis line is free, confidential, and the first step in accessing shelter, counseling, and the rest of SafeHouse’s services.
How to help: Read more on how to donate on their website. Due to the pandemic, SafeHouse is not currently looking for volunteers.
Where: Aurora and Arapahoe County
What they do: Gateway “provides a highly effective combination of shelter and comprehensive services to adults and children fleeing domestic violence,” said Gateway representative, Jeneen Klippel. They provide emergency shelter, an extended-stay shelter, together with a crisis line, licensed counseling, court advocacy and community outreach.
COVID-19 updates: They’re “closely following all of the CDC guidelines on safety” while operating at 100% capacity. Their shelters are open and are also offering virtual therapy and “assisting victims going through the court process via telephone and video conferencing… We are experiencing three times the number of crisis calls during the pandemic than any time prior in our 41-year history,” said Klippel. “And, the numbers keep trending upwards.”
How to access them: 24/7 Crisis Line at 303-343-1851. A live person always answers this line and is there to talk through the different options and resources Gateway provides.
Where: 1330 Fox St., Denver
What they do: The Rose Andom Center works towards the “dream of a centralized, collaborative facility where domestic violence victims can access comprehensive services in their journey to find safety from abuse,” according to their website.
COVID-19 updates: Due to COVID-19, the Rose Andom Center operating solely by phone. They’re reachable from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday-Friday and closed on holidays. However, for times not included in this window, they suggest calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233.
How to access them: Call 720-337-4400 during the times listed above or reach out to the national hotline.
Where: Greeley, providing services to survivors in Weld County.
What they do: A Woman’s Place serves women, men, chidden, transgender, and non-gender-conforming individuals affected by domestic violence.
How to access them: 24-hour crisis hotline at 970-356-4226
How to help: Visit their website for information on how to donate money or items off of their Amazon or Target wishlists. Those interested in volunteering or interning for A Woman’s Place can view the online application and information.
Where: Multiple locations, serving El Paso and Teller Counties.
What they do: TESSA identifies as a “multi-faceted agency” that includes a confidential Safehouse, Victim Advocacy, Counseling and Children’s Programs, a 24/7 Safe Line, and Community Outreach and Education, according to their website. They strive towards a “community free of personal violence for all.” TESSA provides immediate shelter for those fleeing abuses while providing advocacy and counseling for survivors. They also aim to educate the community about domestic violence through outreach to “schools, businesses, and other organizations.”
COVID-19 updates: Due to the pandemic, TESSA is currently closed to the public. However, advocates are available via phone and on their 24-hour hotline (find more phone numbers on their website.)
How to access them: 24-hour crisis hotline at 719-633-3189.
How to help: View their Amazon wish lists as part of their “Holiday Shoppe.” Due to COVID-19, TESSA has suspended in-person volunteer training and hopes to resume in January of 2021.