March 8, in 2023 he already killed 18 women: "Spiral of violence starts from jealousy, ask for help"

The interview with Anna Agosta, national councilor of the network of anti-violence centers DIRE. already on the stage of the Sanremo Festival together with Chiara Ferragni, on the occasion of 8 March: “Violence against women is a constant phenomenon, which manifests itself in the form of escalation. The phenomenon is treated with prevention policies starting from nursery schools”.

Interview with Anna Augusta

national councilor of the DIRE anti-violence network.

The cases of femicide in Italy alone in 2022 there were 103, 61 of which occurred at the hands of the partner or ex, and 34 by a parent or a child. These are the numbers of the phenomenon disclosed by the Central Directorate of the Criminal Police on the occasion of the8th of MarchInternational Women’s Rights Day is celebrated.

And in the first few months of 2023, things don’t seem to be getting better. From January to today, in fact, there have already been 18 cases of feminicide. “Violence often occurs in the form of escalation. Starts from jealousywhich then becomes possession And check and results in physical, economic and sexual confrontation,” explained a Anna Augusta, national councilor of the DIRE anti-violence network.

“Anti-violence centers are indispensable aids to help women overcome the violence of which they are often victims and to report it”, continued Anna, who went up with her colleagues and Clare Ferragni on the stage of the Sanremo 2023 Festival precisely to raise public awareness on this issue.

The horoscope for February 8, 2023

Based on the data available, what is the situation in Italy with regard to anti-violence centres?

“Our national network of shelters is made up of 82 organizations which manage 106 centers distributed throughout the national territory and over 60 shelters, and which represent a third of those present at national level surveyed by the Department of Equal Opportunities. In 2021 we welcomed almost 21 thousand women. Ours is an increase of 3.5% compared to 2020, when there was the pandemic. The data are however more or less constant, because the phenomenon is constant. On the contrary.

The more the centers open, the more the request increases. Many of these are at North, we are talking about 75% of the centers of the network, which are also much more supported by local institutions, while in the South the situation is much more precarious. It all begins with a phone call that the victim can make to our centres. He will answer one operator specialized able to make a risk assessment and give legal information. Then, you activate path to the center”.

Is there a constant feature in the stories of women who reach out to you?

“The dynamic is always the same. Violence occurs in the form of escalation: it often starts from a strong jealousy, which then becomes possession and control, followed by constant psychological violence to then arrive at the physical, economic, sexual attack. So let’s start with one unequal relationship between man and womanand often the latter is found in what is called a spiral of violence from which it is then difficult to get out, also because one of the characteristics of these situations is the isolation from the network of friends and family, so asking for help is difficult.

However, there is also another fact, which we could define as positive. In recent years, the average age of the women who turn to us has dropped, so that at least half are between 30 and 45 years old. That is, it means that they reach a awareness of what is happening much earlier than a few years ago, when instead the victims seeking help had a much higher average age, so they called after years of violence”.

Behind the numbers there are stories. Is there any that have affected you?

“There are many women who, thanks to anti-violence centres, manage to get out of it, because they find a space in which they are trusted, in which they can ask for help in absolute confidentiality and obtain support also for undertaking a action judicial. The problem of violence belongs to all women, no one should find themselves facing this path alone”.

The DIRE network. she is the interlocutor of national and international institutions, also for the elaboration or modification of legislation relating to women’s rights. What do you ask on the occasion of March 8?

“What we ask for as a network of anti-violence centers is a uniform system in Italy because there are different levels, especially in the South the situation is precarious. Funding should be stabilised, which is still too scarce.

But we also strongly ask that the contrast to the phenomenon of male violence against women not be treated as an emergency phenomenon but as structural phenomenon, with constant prevention policies, continuous training of operators, including law enforcement, judiciary and social services, and awareness courses starting from kindergartens, because talking about equality is the way forward. Even today there are few interventions, funding is not stable and often the anti-violence centers, considered indispensable, are forced to close”.

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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