Sheltering in Place and Domestic Violence: Evidence from Calls for Service during COVID-19
25 Pages Posted: 17 May 2020 Last revised: 20 Jul 2020
Date Written: May 14, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a worldwide economic slowdown as more people practice social distancing and shelter at home. The increase in time families spend in isolation, unemployment, and economic stress have the potential to increase domestic violence. In this paper, we document the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on police calls for service for domestic violence. The pandemic and accompanying public health response led to a 10.2 percent increase in domestic violence calls. The increase in reported domestic violence incidents begins before official stay-at-home orders were put into place, is not driven by any particular demographic group, but does appear to be driven by households without a prior history of domestic violence.
Keywords: coronavirus, COVID-19, domestic violence, calls for service
JEL Classification: J12, I18
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation