Arizona County Attorneys Form Task Force To Address Domestic Violence

By Holliday Moore
Published: Wednesday, May 13, 2020 - 7:55am
Maricopa County Attorney's Office
Allister Adel

Before Gov. Doug Ducey issued a stay-at-home order for Arizona, the United Nations was recording a surge in domestic violence cases in countries already under isolation.

Maricopa County Attorney Allister Adel has now confirmed a similar trend in the Phoenix area.  She and Arizona’s 14 other county attorneys are creating a task force to curb the abuse.

“A fundamental function of our government is to keep everyone safe,” Adel said during a town hall teleconference. “And, during these times of uncertainty, it becomes even more important than ever that the criminal justice system has to protect the community from those who seek to do harm.”

Since the executive order was instituted on March 19, Adel said domestic violence calls among adults increased by 25%.

At that same time, she noted child abuse calls had gone down, but that’s not necessarily a positive trend.

“We are seeing a 25% decrease in the calls to the child abuse hotline,” she said. “That’s because our kiddos are not in school.  They’re not with their teachers who are mandatory reporters.”

Adel said isolation is a key strategy for abusers. She is asking neighbors to help during these extraordinary times by keeping an eye out for signs of abuse.  

Calls can be made to the Arizona Child Services abuse hotline at 1-888-SOS-CHILD (1-888-767-2445).

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