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Domestic violence, sexual assault cases increase during pandemic

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Domestic violence and sexual assault cases have been on the rise since the start of the pandemic.

Jill McDonald with the Domestic Violence Crisis Center says there was a 25 percent increase in report of sexual assaults.

The team at DVCC responded to 75 sexual assault victims in 2020 and they took 1,000 more phone calls last year than they did in 2019.

“I kind of equate it to, if you’re not a very good swimmer and you jump in the pool, you’re going to keep your hand on the edge of the pool. So, victims are treading water in their relationships right now knowing that things could go horribly awry and they’re kind of keeping their hands out there for advocates and services just saying like, ‘Are you guys still there? What’s going on?'” said McDonald, the executive director.

McDonald says the pandemic changed the way they offered how victims could get in touch with the DVCC, adding texting and online chat options in addition to phone calls.

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