Hang Up on Stereotypes: Domestic Violence and Anti-Abuse Helpline Campaign
35 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2020 Last revised: 16 Feb 2021
Date Written: July 6, 2020
We estimate the consequences of a Government-led anti-domestic-abuse campaign launched in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic on the number of calls to the Italian domestic violence helpline. In the week after the start of the campaign, we document a sharp increase in the number of calls. By exploiting geographical variation in the exposure to the campaign ads aired on public TV networks, we find that higher exposure is associated with an increase in the number of calls during the weeks after the launch of the campaign. Moreover, the effectiveness of the media campaign is hindered in areas where gender stereotypes are stronger, even when differentials in income and violence are accounted for. More efforts to break down gender stereotypes are needed to successfully increase domestic violence reporting.
Keywords: Domestic violence; Welfare policy; Gender stereotypes; COVID-19
JEL Classification: I18; I38; J12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation