Group reminds victims domestic violence shelters, assistance are available

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GEORGETOWN, Ky. (WTVQ) – With families and couples having to spend more time together and often confined because of coronavirus restrictions, experts fear an increase in domestic violence and child abuse.

And many worry the cases will go unreported or under-reported.

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Those concerns put extra emphasis on April, which is Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month.

The Kentucky Association of Sexual Assault Programs is working with law enforcement agencies and others to make sure victims are aware of resources in their communities.

The association and advocates are using social medical and even a video as part of its outreach.

KASAP is the coalition of the 13 rape crisis centers in Kentucky. These 13 programs provide support and advocacy services to survivors of sexual violence across the Commonwealth 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Advocacy and support for survivors of sexual violence is still available during the COVID-19 crisis. To get connected with a local program, visit our website at www.kasap.org or call the 24/7 crisis line at 1 (800) 656-4673.

Many law enforcement agencies are trying to reach out to the community to remind residents domestic violence assistance and shelters is available and shelters are operating during the pandemic for those who need a refuge.

Georgetown Police Department is among the ones posting information on social media and web sites.

“(We) would like victims of intimate personal violence to know Emergency Protective Orders can still be obtained 24 hours a day at the Police Department and the Sheriff’s Office,” Georgetown Police wrote on the department’s Facebook page.

“Emergency shelters for domestic violence victims are open and available around the state,” the department added.

Among numbers victims can call are:

— Georgetown Police victim advocates: 502-863-7826
— Greenhouse 17 domestic violence hotline and resource center: 1-800-544-2022
— Ampersand sexual assault hotline and resource center: 1-800-656-4673.