Submission to the UK Parliament Joint Committee on Human Rights in respect of the Government’s response to COVID-19: Human Rights implications

As members of the MGFVPC we have extensive research experience in documenting and developing strategies on family violence (https://arts.monash.edu/gender-and-family- violence. Collectively we are currently engaged in research documenting the impact of policies introduced as a result of Covid-19 on women (and children)(see Pfitzner, Fitz-Gibbon & True, Gender-based violence and help-seeking behaviours during the COVID-19 Pandemic (https://www.monash.edu/arts/gender-and-family-violence/research-projects/covid-19- and-gender-based-violence); Segrave & Maher, Family violence, help seeking and temporary migration during COVID-19 (https://lens.monash.edu/@politics- society/2020/04/02/1379949/coronavirus-family-violence-and-temporary-migration-in-the-time-of- covid-19) and Walklate et al, Domestic Abuse: Responding to the Shadow Pandemic in England and Wales (https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/law-and-social-justice/research/coronavirus- research/the-shadow-pandemic/working-papers/).

Based on our ongoing and current research expertise in this area, our response focuses primarily on the third question posed by this inquiry:

• Which groups will be disproportionately affected by measures taken by the Government to address the COVID-19 pandemic?

In what follows we offer a review of some of the key concerns that this question raises and offer five recommendations in the light of our review.