Oregon’s Domestic Violence Survivors Are Impacted By The Housing Problem

Housing is one of the most pressing needs for persons leaving abuse, according to domestic violence service providers in Oregon.

“The housing crisis has had a significant effect on those who have experienced or survived violence. Accessing housing may be exceedingly challenging, “said Jayne Downing, the Center for Hope and Safety’s executive director in Salem.

Data gathered by the Oregon Alliance to End Violence Against Women shows that from June 2021 to July 2022, 6,610 service requests in Oregon were not fulfilled. During that period, 5,245 survivors received emergency shelter, and 90,914 calls for assistance were made to service providers statewide.

On September 9, 2021, 1,100 victims and survivors of domestic violence sought out and received treatment, according to a one-day national survey of domestic violence providers in Oregon. 622 of those service requests received assistance with emergency shelter. According to the poll, there were 127 unfulfilled service requests on that one day, 80% of them were for housing.

Some people’s lives depend on these kinds of calls.

A survivor and mother of two spoke in Spanish, saying, “I remember when I left I was desperate and thought ‘wow I would need to sleep on the streets, I’m homeless so I started phoning.” She requested anonymity out of concern for her safety.

Oregon's Domestic Violence Survivors Are Impacted
Oregon’s Domestic Violence Survivors Are Impacted

When she departed with her 24-year-old daughter and a three-month-old baby, she claimed that her life was in danger. In the end, she received assistance from Clackamas County’s Northwest Family Services.

My daughter already has a job, and I have my rent taken care of thanks to their assistance, I remarked.

Legislators in Oregon set aside $6 million in housing service money for domestic violence victims across the state for the 2020 legislative session. It was the first time the state had allocated money to Oregon Domestic Violence Service Providers just for housing. The funds could be used for rent, deposits, credit repair, or hotel stays as a last resort.

They must all figure out where to go, how to get accommodation, and how to get money because they frequently rely on their partners, according to Downing.

Advocates are requesting that Congress renew the $ 6 million in funding this year.

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