People who experience domestic violence can be especially at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. Survivors could be forced to into quarantine with an abuser.
But domestic violence services are still available across the state.
Becky Winstead is the vice president of domestic violence services at Remedies Renewing Lives in Rockford.
She says survivors are often waiting for a moment when their partner leaves to go to work.
“If they're not working and they're staying at home, it's going to be even harder to reach out for help,” said Winstead.
Remedies' 24-hour domestic violence hotline is still open. Winstead says they’ve had to cancel some face-to-face support groups, but counseling sessions are still being done over the phone.
Remedies is also still operating its emergency shelter for domestic violence survivors, although they’ve been forced to slightly reduce the shelter capacity due to COVID-19 concerns.
She said even if the shelter is at capacity, people will get help.
“We will do everything we can to either accommodate them in our facility or find another option for them," said Winstead.
Winnebago County Courts are now offering an online option to file orders of protection. Winstead says they have staff available to help people traverse the legal work needed to do so.
The Remedies Renewing Lives 24-hour hotline can be reached at 815-962-6102. Along with that, the Illinois domestic violence help line is at 877-863-6338 and the national hotline is 800-799-7233.
You can also click here to find a domestic violence agency in your area.