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Protection for Some, Purgatory for Others: Evidence from Helplines on the Evolution of Violence Against Peruvian Women and Children During the Covid-19 Pandemic

24 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2021

See all articles by Renzo J.C. Calderon-Anyosa

Renzo J.C. Calderon-Anyosa

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health

Felicia Knaul

University of Miami - Miller School of Medicine

Jay S. Kaufman

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health

More...

Abstract

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic created conditions that aggravated violence against women and children. Several countries expanded helplines and we analyze the process and outcomes in Peru.

Methods: We divided the year into three periods: pre-lockdown, lockdown, and post-lockdown. Based on the mean difference in calls by month per million population between 2020 and 2019 in the pre-lockdown period we calculated the expected calls that we would have observed in the absence of the pandemic in the following periods. We performed stratified analyses by type of violence and perpetrator relationship in women and children.

Findings: We identified 77% more calls per month in 2020 compared to 2019.In women, during the lockdown period there was an increase in calls when the perpetrator was the partner (45·2, 95%CI:14·2; 76·3) and other relatives (17·5, 95%CI: 3·6; 31·4) and in the post-lockdown period, there was an increase from all types of perpetrators. Regarding sexual violence, in the lockdown period, calls related to a perpetrator from outside the household decreased for both children (-8·6, 95% CI: -14·5; -2·6 calls/month per million) and women (-5·2, 95% CI: -8.1; -2·3).

Interpretation: The lockdown may have had a protective effect against violence by perpetrators from outside the household for both children and women in Peru. However, when the origin of the violence was within the family environment, a decrease in calls is inconclusive, especially in calls related to sexual or physical violence, as the lockdown could affect either the incidence of events or the failure to report.

Funding Information: Renzo Calderon was supported by the Tomlinson Doctoral Fellowship, McGill
University.

Declaration of Interests: None to declare.

Ethics Approval Statement: Ethics approval was not requested for the present study. The data has been collected by the Peruvian Ministry of Women after obtaining consent and has been properly anonymized. All the information used in the present study is freely available in the public domain, and no additional data was collected.

Keywords: Violence against women, violence against children, COVID-19, lockdown

Suggested Citation

Calderon-Anyosa, Renzo J.C. and Knaul, Felicia and Kaufman, Jay S., Protection for Some, Purgatory for Others: Evidence from Helplines on the Evolution of Violence Against Peruvian Women and Children During the Covid-19 Pandemic. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3958966 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3958966

Renzo J.C. Calderon-Anyosa (Contact Author)

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health ( email )

845 Sherbrook Street West
Montreal, QC H3A 0G4
Canada

Felicia Knaul

University of Miami - Miller School of Medicine ( email )

Miami, FL 33136
United States

Jay S. Kaufman

McGill University - Epidemiology, Biostatistics, & Occupational Health ( email )

845 Sherbrook Street West
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1G5 QC H3A 0G4
Canada

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