Changes in Frequency and Form of Domestic Violence in Calls to Violence Helpline during COVID-19 in Finland

30 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2022

See all articles by Jarno Tuominen

Jarno Tuominen

Department of Psychology and Speech-Language Pathology

Anniina Kaittila

Department of Social Research, University of Turku

Vappu Halme

Department of Social Research, University of Turku

Johanna Hietamäki

Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL)

Mia Hakovirta

INVEST Research Flagship Center, University of Turku

Henri Olkoniemi

Division of Psychology, Faculty of Education, UNiversity of Oulu

Date Written: June 3, 2022

Abstract

In the wake of COVID-19 a second pandemic of domestic violence (DV) has been reported. Stay-at-home orders intended to protect citizens and mitigate the spread of the virus have left many DV victims trapped with their abusers. Research indicates an increase in the frequency and severity of violence against women during the pandemic. Additionally, according to international studies, the fear, uncertainty, and perceived lack of control associated with the pandemic creates an environment that can exacerbate and trigger different forms of violence. The pandemic makes help seeking even harder with disruptions in and limited access to support services. However, a more detailed picture on the changes in the frequency and form of DV remains unclear. We analyzed the changes in frequency and content to the Finnish violence helpline Nollalinja both before and during the pandemic (N=7416). Regression models were built to predict changes in call contents with the presence of the COVID -19 pandemic. An overall increase was found in the number of DV calls during the pandemic, and especially during the emergency powers legislation. Psychological violence increasing more steeply than other types of violence. The proportion between various forms of violence remained unchanged. These findings provide detailed data on the phenomenon of DV during the pandemic and inform service development and provision.

Note:
Funding Information: Research has been funded by the Academy of Finland, grant number 294648.

Conflict of Interests: Authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Keywords: consequences of violence, COVID-19, domestic violence, frequency of violence, violence helpline, types of violence

JEL Classification: I10

Suggested Citation

Tuominen, Jarno and Kaittila, Anniina and Halme, Vappu and Hietamäki, Johanna and Hakovirta, Mia and Olkoniemi, Henri, Changes in Frequency and Form of Domestic Violence in Calls to Violence Helpline during COVID-19 in Finland (June 3, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4127329 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4127329

Jarno Tuominen (Contact Author)

Department of Psychology and Speech-Language Pathology ( email )

Turku, 20014
Finland

Anniina Kaittila

Department of Social Research, University of Turku ( email )

Assistentinkatu 7
Turku, 20014
Finland

Vappu Halme

Department of Social Research, University of Turku ( email )

Assistentinkatu 7
Turku, 20014
Finland

Johanna Hietamäki

Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) ( email )

Mannerheimintie 166
Helsinki, 00271
Finland

Mia Hakovirta

INVEST Research Flagship Center, University of Turku ( email )

Turku, 20014
Finland

Henri Olkoniemi

Division of Psychology, Faculty of Education, UNiversity of Oulu ( email )

P.O. Box 4600
Oulu FIN-90014, 90570
Finland

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