UN Women Moldova and Sweden provide personal protection equipment for more than 3 thousand social assistants and social workers across the country
The first lot of personal protection equipment (PPE) in the value of 23 500 USD containing locally produced respiratory protection masks and disinfectant solutions was delivered this week to 36 Territorial structures of social assistance across the country. The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and Swedish Government thus complemented the efforts of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection to help Moldova’s frontline social assistance personnel providing services for victims of domestic violence and for the most vulnerable groups of persons to continue their activity and to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. A total number of 3279 of social assistants and social workers are benefiting from this support.
Date: Thursday, April 16, 2020
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, in the Republic of Moldova, about 64% of women have suffered at least once in their life a form of violence from their husband or partner. During the quarantine period recommended for combating COVID-19, exists the high risk that the number of violence cases might increase. In some countries practicing social distancing recently the reported cases of domestic violence have tripled.
Anna LYBERG, Ambassador of Sweden in the Republic of Moldova, mentioned that “Currently, considering the COVID-19 crisis, violence remains part of everyday life for many women in the country. By this contribution we would like to keep services available for those in urgent need but also ensure a sufficient level of protection for specialists that work in preventing and combating domestic based violence. This means that workers from shelters and social workers, as well as beneficiaries can easily and protected access it.”
Due to the emergency situation that have been declared in the Republic of Moldova since March 17, the essential social services are limited and experience the lack of proper protective equipment to respond to COVID-19 adequately and to continue supporting their beneficiaries.
“The response to COVID-19 is a reminder of the essential contribution of women at all levels, including as frontline responders. Considering that in the Republic of Moldova around 80 percent of workers in the health and social sector are women, we are mobilizing our efforts to enable them provide support to those who are the most affected by this outbreak, including victims of gender-based violence. For us, it is critical that survivors of violence and other vulnerable and most at-risk persons continue to access social services”, said Peterson MAGOOLA, Representative a.i for UN Women Moldova.
“In the complicated situation for the Republic of Moldova, but also for the whole world, any support and involvement in helping the population is welcome. Thank you for solidarity and responsibility " – added Viorica DUMBRAVEANU, Minister of Health, Labor and Social Protection of the Republic of Moldova.
In the beginning of April 2020, UN Women with the support of Sweden also contributed to the efforts of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection and the National Coalition “Life without Violence” to ensure with the necessary products women beneficiaries of 15 public associations, public institutions and placement centers from different regions of the country.
The first case of COVID-19 was registered in the Republic of Moldova on March 7, and, according to official data on April 16, 2 049 cases have been confirmed. More than half of the affected people are women.
The UN system in Moldova supports the national response to the pandemic through coordinated activities, which aim to protect people, especially the most vulnerable, and increase the capacities of the national system in various fields.