The psychological care service of the Provincial Council of Álava between January and October, it has treated 1,103 victims of sexist violence, a record number since the start-up of this service in 1991 since it exceeds the maximum of 1,092 registered at the end of 2019.
The provincial deputy for Social Services, Emilio Sola, and the psychologist of the gender violence team of the Foral Institute of Social Welfare, Pilar Sanz de Pablo, have reported today on the activity of this service on the occasion of the next celebration on November 25 of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.
Last year the pandemic reduced the number of women cared for by the Provincial Council (there were 1,071 in the whole of 2020) but the lockdown domiciliary “heightened the drama” of the many victims, who sometimes faced “really terrifying” situations.
In 2021, however, the number of women and adolescents cared for by the Hegoak psychological care service has grown again. has doubled in the last decade (In 2011, 540 people were attended) and also, Sola has regretted, it is not possible to determine when this number will stop growing.
Specifically, in the first 10 months of this year, 1103 women were treated, of which more than a half (598) have asked for help for first time, while the rest were already within the system (psychological treatment has an average duration of two years).
Hegoak also offers legal attention victims of abuse. This service has attended 221 people, practically the same number in all of 2019. Of them 50 are women, 70 are minors in their charge and 1 adult person in their charge.
Also macho men who want to change
Psychological attention has also been given to 45 men who have shown their intention to change your violent attitudes and that they have asked for help voluntarily, although many times they come after their partners have requested it.
Attention to these men has resulted in “success stories” that have been more frequent in relationships in which less time had passed since the start of the violence, according to Sanz de Pablo.
There is no profile of the abusive man asking for help, although there has been a greater desire to change between the youths, who sometimes come encouraged by their environment, both friends and youth associations “who are playing a fairly important role”, has valued Sanz de Pablo.
The deputy has warned, however, that young people are far from being feminist, since many girls who “have internalized that it is normal for their partners to control their cell phones.”
“You have to do a lot of pedagogy” and men should “make an effort” to change their violent behaviors and also to detect which of their attitudes hide macho ideas or obey micro-chauvinisms of which they are not aware, he has stated.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.