Funding will be directed to state-licensed agencies to provide victims with mobile devices and improved WI-FI access.
ALBANY, N.Y. — New York State’s COVID-19 Domestic Violence Task Force says access to mobile technology is a critical need faced by victims of domestic violence.
Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $1.5 million for state-licensed agencies to connect victims faced with increased isolation due to the pandemic with mobile devices and improved WI-FI access.
Melissa DeRosa, Secretary to the Governor and Chair of the Domestic Violence Task Force said, “In this pandemic the number of domestic violence cases increased. We are taking every step possible to help women who are trapped in dangerous situations. We’ve adopted an innovative approach to best meet the needs of survivors and this additional funding to providers will help ensure that no New Yorker lacks access to critical domestic violence-related services as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
New York saw a spike in requests for help to the state’s Domestic and Sexual Assault Hotline during the first few months of the pandemic. In addition, many individuals couldn’t make phone calls while sheltering in place with their abusers prompting the hotline to launch a text and chat option.
Here is a list of programs and shelters in WNY sharing in the state funding:
- Western New York ACCORD (Allegany County Community Opportunities for Rural Development): $6,000
- Cattaraugus Community Action: $12,000
- Haven House (Child and Family Services of Erie County): $13,000
- Erie County District Attorney’s Office: $69,000
- Family Justice Center of Erie County: $73,000
- Hispanos Unidos de Buffalo: $9,000
- Pinnacle Community Services: $8,000
- Suicide Prevention & Crisis Services: $38,000
- The Salvation Army of Jamestown: $3,000
- YWCA of the Niagara Frontier: $19,000
New York State’s Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline can be reached at 1-800-942-6906, text: 844-997-2121 or chat at opdv.ny.gov. A list of domestic violence hotlines by county can be found here.