Financial stress escalating violence in homes

By Courtney Lane - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A statewide survey reports more cases of domestic violence around the holidays, and East Texas shelters say they are full right now.

The East Texas Crisis Center (ETCC) is seeing a 26-percent increase in calls for help through their hotline this year.

The cause? They say financial stress is escalating violence in East Texas homes.

"A man who's already struggling, and perhaps he's lost his job, perhaps he's having lots of problems, perhaps he's experiencing clinical depression, it makes him very dangerous when she tries to leave," said Lana Peacock with ETCC.

Which is why the Crisis Center in Tyler and Women's Center in Longview are opening their doors to battered women and children, keeping them safe and protected. But Lana Peacock says the economy is forcing many women to stay in abusive situations. They feel trapped because their abuser is also their breadwinner.

"We've been full this year," said Peacock. "Women are having to stay longer because they don't necessarily have job skills that they can. Once they leave here, they can take care of their children."

So the Crisis Center has started job skills training for victims, helping them get back on their feet. The purpose of Allstate's survey is to draw awareness to the havens.

"No matter what your financial situation is, no matter your worries there is help out there and the East Texas Crisis Center and the Women's Center of East Texas [are] perfect examples," said Kristen Beaman, with the Allstate Foundation. "They can help survivors in your area."

But donations are down. The Crisis Center is falling about 40-percent short this year. That is why they need your help more than ever, to continue meeting this growing need. Any amount of monetary donations are appreciated, but you can also donate items to the Flamingo's Resale Store in Tyler. Proceeds help support the shelter and keep their lights on. Flamingo's is located on Sixth Street in Tyler.

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