Domestic violence shelters in Kansas adjust to challenges caused by pandemic

Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 5:38 PM CDT
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SALINA, Kan. (KWCH) - Since the COVID-19 pandemic began about six months ago, domestic violence shelters have had to adjust. Due to social distancing and over COVID-19 precautions, shelters have had to find alternative housing spaces for people identified as victims in domestic violence situations.

“It’s been difficult for our agency because we’re trying to transition people out of shelters so that those in emergency accommodations can then enter into our shelter," said Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas Chief Executive Officer Andrea Quill. "And so it’s kind of like a balancing act you know, we don’t want to leave people in alternate housing unless we have to and because of the pandemic we’ve had to utilize that more than ever before.”

The Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas, based in Salina, points out that resources are available for those in need. This assistance includes financial help with deposits, rental assistance up to six months, utilities, etc...

“We really have a lot of resources at our disposal to help people, and I don’t think they realize that. But all they have to do initially is make the phone call,” Quill said.

The group’s shelter also has expanded the way it works with victims.

“We have a lot of new ways way that they’re coming about and talking to us. As far as like, the social media, we’ve had people have friends contact us a lot more, said Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas Grant Project Specialist Susan Leech. "A lot of secondary victims, so somebody’s loved ones or support systems reaching out trying to find out services because they know they have somebody that’s being victimized.”

The shelter accommodates families, people with disabilities, and pets. The Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas says you can help shelters across Kansas by volunteering your time or donating money. You can find a list of organizations helping those impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault, including locations and contact information here: Kansas Sexual and Domestic Violence Service Providers.

You can reach the Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas at its website, or by calling 800-874-1499.

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