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Are shelter-at-home orders keeping domestic violence victims from seeking help?


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Mike Osborne) -- A mid-state domestic and sexual assault therapist worries a lot of abuse may be going unreported thanks to shelter-at-home.


Alicia Bunch Vargas with Nashville’s Sexual Assault Center says victims isolated at home with their abusers may lack the privacy needed to call for help.


Vargas notes there are ways victims can seek help discreetly by either emailing, texting, or even messaging through social media.


WMOT asked Vargas, ‘How do you tell if a friend or family member is being abused when you can’t see them in-person?’ She suggested looking for any indication of controlling behavior.


“Maybe not letting the person use their phone whenever they want to, or telling them ‘No’ they can’t Zoom, that they have to just talk on the phone, or controlling when they’re going or when they’re coming.”


 You can call the Sexual Assault Center Crisis and Support line at 800-879-1999, or look for them on Facebook at NashvilleSAC.


If you are in need of shelter or an order of protection, contact the Nashville Family Safety Center at 615-880-1100.




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