MCALLEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — With the holidays quickly approaching, domestic violence advocates are working with police to prepare for more calls.
Resources like Mujeres Unidas tend to see more domestic violence calls during and after the holidays.
“As of right now we usually get a little over 20 calls a day,” said Victoria De Los Santos,. “After the holidays we do see an increase.”
While domestic violence calls tend to rise during the holiday season, family gatherings are just one reason behind this, according to police.
“I would say a lot of the financial pressures as well,” said Laura Rentera, with the Pharr Police Department. “You have a lot of consumption of alcohol, spending of money for Christmas gifts, coming to a financial bind and just everything coming together during these large gatherings is why the reason we see the increase.”
Police ensure resources like Mujeres Unidas are prepared for anything and understand when someone needs more than just an emergency order. Mujeres Unidas partners up with police year-round.
“They refer them to us,” De Los Santos said. “If it’s the case of domestic violence or sexual, we will provide the services that relate to them whether it shelters legal advocacy, counseling whatever it is that they need.”
Other resources like Friendships of Women are also focusing on victims in rural areas across the Rio Grande Valley, ensuring they have the same assistance.
“Sometimes they are on leave they have more hours of the day from home and sometimes they are on vacation,” said Lupita Jimenez with Friendship of Women. “So this make makes it worse for the victim.”
But both Mujeres Unidas and Friendship of Women are stressing if anyone needs help during the holiday or at any time of the year, just reach out.
“Find someone that you can trust and when you’re ready to speak up. we’re here for you,” De Los Santo said.