Mid-South shelter seeing increase in intakes because of coronavirus outbreak

Mid-South shelter seeing increase in intakes because of coronavirus outbreak

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Many are finding themselves in tough times, made worse because people are being asked to stay home and self-distance.

We spoke with leaders of the YWCA of Greater Memphis who say they’ve seen an increase in people coming to their domestic violence shelters. They think it’s due to sudden life changes caused by COVID-19.

Within a matter of days people's lives have been drastically changed because of COVID-19.

“We’re dealing with possible layoffs, the close contact, and then you have your children at home. So there’s a lot of different dynamics that does make a lot of the situations very stressful,” said Marquiepta Odom, executive director of YMCA of Greater Memphis.

Executive director of the YWCA Marquiepta Odom says this is why she thinks they've seen an increase of people looking for help at their shelter.

“We can't actually pick them up because then that's a liability for us at that time, but we can help them coordinate with the police,” said Odom.

Odom says they plan to keep their shelter open. They still have open beds at the moment, but there is a chance they could run out.

“It is a great possibility that we could possibly run out of space and at that time, we will have to try to coordinate with some of the other shelters within the state of Tennessee, to see if they have an availability,” said Odom.

Odom says for anyone finding themselves in abusive situations, they can call the YWCA's hotline at 901-725-4277.

You can also send donations directly to the YWCA at 766 South Highland Street.

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