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This September, the Family and Youth Services Bureau recognized National Preparedness Month by writing about the needs of domestic violence survivors after hurricanes and other disasters. In a recent Family Room post, Marylouise Kelley, director of the bureau’s Family Violence Prevention & Services Program, shares her team’s work connecting survivors to federal funds after Hurricane Sandy.
Readers may not be surprised to learn about hurricane-relatated costs stemming from power outages, shuttered businesses, and physical damage to homes and communities. But they might not recognize the impact of these setbacks on domestic violence suvivors struggling to gain financial independence from their abusers.
For example, one woman who left her violent relationship before Hurricane Sandy used the funds to pay for alternative housing after she and her daughter had to leave their flood-damaged apartment. More than 500 domestic violence survivors impacted by the storm in New York and New Jersey have received financial housing assistance since 2012, Kelley writes.