The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on child welfare: domestic abuse

Publication date 2020

Our briefing uses insight from NSPCC helpline contacts and Childline counselling sessions to highlight the impact of domestic abuse on children and young people during the coronavirus pandemic.

Between 23 March and 17 May 2020 the NSPCC helpline received 1,500 contacts from adults worried about the impact of domestic abuse on children, and Childline delivered over 500 counselling sessions to children and young people who were worried about domestic abuse.

The key themes of these contacts include:

  • reduced access to support networks
  • lockdown bringing domestic abuse into sharp focus
  • making it harder to speak out
  • making it more difficult to leave
  • drinking during lockdown
  • exploiting fears about the coronavirus
  • young people worried about other family members.
Download The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on child welfare: domestic abuse
Download the briefing (PDF)

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I really need your help; my dad has been physical abusing my mum. He has an anger problem and it's getting out of hand. The smallest things make him angry and he starts shouting. I'm terrified of him and I've had enough, I can't take it any more - please help me!

Boy, aged 14, Childline
I used to only hear them late at night or first thing in the morning before I left for work - now I'm working from home, I realise it's happening throughout the day. I sometimes hear the toddler crying as the parents are fighting. It pains me to think the child is having to live like this - can you help?

Neighbour, NSPCC helpline

NSPCC (2020) The impact of the coronavirus pandemic on child welfare: domestic abuse. Insight briefing. London: NSPCC.

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