Staunton, July 31 – It is a commonplace to assert that the lockdown accompanying the covid pandemic increased stress among family members, but only now are data becoming available showing just how serious the impact of the stress of being confined together for extended periods was in the Russian Federation.
According to the Algorhythm of Light, a consortium of Russian women’s rights NGOs, the share of deaths of Russian women at the hands of partners increased from just over half of all such deaths to two-thirds during the pandemic when many couples were prevented from interacting with others outside the home (readymag.com/algorithmsveta/2020-2021/).
The group compiled these statistics on the basis of court filings and acknowledges that the actual numbers may be even worse. But the increase in such deaths during the pandemic was almost certainly worse in Russia than elsewhere because the government not only failed to have programs to combat it but denied that this was a problem (the-village.ru/city/news/380963-ne-veryat-v-nasilie and tass.ru/obschestvo/8259403).
Russian women’s rights groups have been calling for the adoption of special laws and programs to prevent violence in the home for more than 30 years without success; and when they appealed at the start of the pandemic for emergency steps, they were no more successful than earlier (kommersant.ru/doc/4310901).
As a result, the upsurge in deaths from family violence in Russia was far greater than in any other country for which data are available.