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A bed shortage is affecting Texas domestic violence shelters

Being abused by someone you live with is a horrible experience. In some cases, domestic violence victims might feel like they are stuck in their situation. It is horrible to think that you are being forced to live in a home with someone who is abusing you; however, there is a shortage of beds in Texas for domestic violence survivors.

That isn’t to say that domestic violence survivors shouldn’t try to get away. It does, however, mean that people who leave an abusive home might not be able to get services that they need when they leave. In many cases, the people who seek help from shelters might be offered alternatives to staying in the shelter, but they wouldn’t be close to medical advocacy, support groups, legal advocacy, crisis intervention and counseling that they might need.

There are 81 shelters for domestic violence shelters in Texas that operate around the clock. In a survey that garnered responses from 27 of those, it was determined that an average of 366 people were served per shelter. Most of the people seeking help were women, and around 10 percent of those were pregnant.

The average stay in a domestic violence shelter ranges from 6 days to 50 days, but even that can be affected by the bed shortage. It is vital that anyone who needs to seek shelter from an abusive relationship get the help he or she needs. In some cases, that can mean getting restraining orders to help provide a legal basis to keep you protected. Make sure that you understand how to protect yourself if you need to get out of an abusive relationship.

Source: PsychCentral, “Domestic Violence Survivors in Texas Face Barriers to Safety,” Tracy Pedersen, May 26, 2015

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