An SOS mobile application for abuse victims will be launched in the coming days, President of NGO Phoni, Anastasia Papadopoulou, said on Tuesday.
The app, currently being built in cooperation with Cyta and the police, will allow victims of violence and abuse to request immediate police intervention and assistance.
“We hope it will be ready for use within the coming days,” Papadopoulou, who is also a government advisor on child protection, said.
In early April, the Association for the Prevention and Handling of Family Violence (SPAVO) raised the alarm over the surge in reports of cases of domestic violence since start of the island’s coronavirus outbreak, which has left many victims isolated at home with their perpatrators.
The app will hopefully act as a valuable tool for victims, many of which live with their perpetrator making it difficult for them to call for help, while the suspension of schools, where many cases of abuse are identified by teachers, may leave cases of child abuse unreported.
Papadopoulou recalled police warnings over the worrying surge in online abuse incidents, stressing that “parents need to realize that children are not safe just because they’re at home, as increased exposure to the internet has led to an increased risk of abuse.”