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Isolation and Stress from COVID-19 Increases Potential of Domestic and Partner Violence
(Leesburg, Va.) – February 5, 2021 – 100WomenStrong is challenging the Loudoun County community to match or exceed its recent $50,000 seed donation to Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter (LAWS) to support LAWS Legal Services. LAWS is the only domestic violence and sexual assault crisis center in Virginia with a legal department. LAWS’ Legal Services offers free legal consultation or representation to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking who need assistance obtaining a protective order or with other family law issues.
“Escaping a violent situation is costly and difficult, particularly for those whose abusers control access to funds or have isolated the victim from support they would need to break free,” said Judy Hanley, Chief Executive Officer of LAWS. “This always is a concern, but it is even greater since the COVID-19 pandemic has increased isolation and economic uncertainty for so many in our County.
“According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration [SAMHSA], the conditions of the pandemic may have created violence in families where it didn’t exist before and worsened situations in homes where mistreatment and violence already was a problem,” Hanley continued. “Supporting these victims with free legal advice or representation is more imperative now than ever, particularly since the pandemic will continue to affect our community for at least another several months. We at LAWS are so thankful to 100WomenStrong for their caring and support.”
LAWS provided services to more than 1,200 clients in 2020, and approximately 250 of them received free, confidential Legal Services, including:
- Consultation with an attorney
- Legal representation for victims obtaining a Protective Order
- Legal representation for victims in custody, divorce, child support & spousal support hearings
- Assistance with filing for Protective Orders
- Court accompaniment by an Advocate
“LAWS offers invaluable support and services to victims of domestic and partner violence in our community,” said Karen Schaufeld, Founder and President of 100WomenStrong. “According to the CDC, approximately 1 in 4 women and almost 1 in 10 men have experienced sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner during their lifetime. Its effects, including mental health issues, can last for years.
“100WomenStrong is asking the community to step up to support the LAWS Legal Services department in its mission to protect victims of domestic and partner violence from their abusers and to free them to move forward to a better life.”
To participate in the challenge, you can donate by check or online:
Make checks payable to LAWS:
Write “100WS – LAWS Legal Services” in the memo line.
Send check to:
LAWS, 105 East Market Street, Leesburg, VA 20176.
To donate online:
Click the Donate Now button, and on the donation page you will see:
“If you have a special purpose for your donation, please let us know.”
In the “I want my donation to be dedicated” type: 100WS – Legal Services
To reach a LAWS Legal Services Advocate, please call 703-771-3397.
Formed in 2008, 100WomenStrong is a group of concerned philanthropists seeking to strategically invest in organizations and programs that enrich the lives of Loudoun County residents. They are committed to improving the quality of life for residents of Loudoun County, Virginia, through strategic grants to non-profits working in the areas of shelter, health, hunger and education. Members of 100WomenStrong connect and collaborate to leverage their philanthropic resources as a component fund of the Community Foundation for Loudoun and Northern Fauquier Counties.
Other valuable information from LAWS: