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Tue Sep 8, 2020, 01:14 AM

Domestic violence shelters still wait for public entities to provide safe spaces for survivors with

Domestic violence shelters still wait for public entities to provide safe spaces for survivors with COVID-19

The Puerto Rico Domestic Violence Shelter Network has remained committed to providing help to domestic violence victims since the coronavirus pandemic emergency began on March 16, addressing concerns over how to take care of survivors who were symptomatic of or diagnosed positive for COVID-19 to La Fortaleza’s Medical Task Force on April 6, and since April 26 presenting a prevention protocol proposal to the Health and Family departments and the Women’s Advocate Office (OPM by its Spanish initials).

Since that time, both the network and its members have been waiting for the entities to provide safe spaces for COVID-19 positive survivors, Julia de Burgos Shelter Executive Director Coraly León Morales told the Star on Sunday.

León Morales said that because domestic violence shelters are common use spaces, concerns were raised as operators of those facilities feared survivors would be victims of a COVID-19 outbreak and didn’t have the physical space, or specialized resources such as nurses and in-house doctors, to address the needs of suspected and diagnosed victims. The Network determined therefore, that since they were not getting a response from the aforementioned entities, to develop a uniform prevention protocol proposal that was put into action at every shelter to guarantee medical services and protection to survivors.

“A Shelter Network member identified a space that was not being used and it’s apart from the other spaces that are being occupied by other survivors,” León Morales said. “In order to make that space work and receive domestic violence survivors who were diagnosed with COVID-19, we need funds to be allocated because nurses, doctors, personal protective equipment, and disinfection procedures are required to comply with every need not only for personal security but also medical security.”

Read more: https://www.sanjuandailystar.com/post/domestic-violence-shelters-still-wait-for-public-entities-to-provide-safe-spaces-for-survivors-with

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