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The helpline 1522 during the pandemic period - III quarter 2021

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ISTAT with this publication continues the analysis of the data contained in the data set of the helpline 1522, against gender-based violence and stalking, provided to Department of Equal Opportunity of Presidency of Council of Ministers.

Following a suggestion provided at international level, the information collected by the Italian helpline, can provide some evidence on the domestic violence’s trend during the pandemic period, and, after a few months, also its monitoring. In the absence of an updated statistical study carried out in real time, in fact, the analysis of data from calls to 1522, especially if compared with the same period of previous years, can provide useful indications on the evolution of the phenomenon during the lockdown, especially on the trend of requests for help.

The awareness campaigns promoted by the Department of Equal Opportunities of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers on television channels and relaunched on social media between the end of March and April have reinforced the message of the importance of the request for help to get out of the violence, which, in consideration of the new updated data, confirm their relevance.

Even if in a limited way, in the third quarter of 2021 the number of valid calls, both telephone and chat, decreased compared to the previous quarter (8,217 valid calls -3.4%) while for the victims there was a more evident decrease, from 4,697 to 4,100 victims (-12.7%) thus confirming what has already been analyzed in the comparison between the first and second quarter of 2021. The share of requests for help via chat, which represent 14.5% of the contact methods (they were approximately 15% in the second quarter of 2021).

Compared to the third quarter of 2020 (6,144 valid calls and 4,125 victims) there is an increase in valid calls and a slight decrease in victims (+ 34% and -9% respectively). Among the reasons that lead to contacting the toll-free number, calls relating to “requests for help from victims of violence” and “reports for cases of violence” continue to prevail, which together make up 42% (3,439 calls) of valid calls. However, in the third quarter, compared to the same period of the previous year, they decreased by 24%, as well as calls for “Request for help for victims of stalking” (-10%).

The people who called 1522 for the first time in the third quarter of 2021 are 82.7%, a figure which remains constant compared to the previous quarters and slightly lower than the same period in 2020. Among the victims this figure reaches 90, 11%. The victims who contacted 1522 reported having suffered multiple types of violence in 66.1% of cases (in particular, 2 in 21.8% and 3 or more forms of violence in 49.2% of cases). When victims contact 1522, they more frequently report physical violence as the main violence they suffer, but considering all forms of violence suffered, psychological violence is the most frequent.

With respect to gravity, comparing the data of the third quarter of 2021 with the previous one, all the situations of violence whose effects are more serious, such as cases where the victim felt life threatening or fearful of dying from violence or fear for the loved one’s safety decreased while, on the other hand there has been an increase in reports of violence whose effects are less serious for one’s own safety.

The percentage of victims who declare they feel anxiety goes from 13.4% to 16.2% while the victims who feel a serious state of subjection goes from 10.6% to 15.6%.

The 1522 service plays an important role as a hub at a territorial level between the services in support of those who turn to it: 69.5% of the victims in the third quarter of 2021 were directed to a territorial service and of these 91, 2% (equal to 2,381 victims) was sent to a refuge.

Tables report information: on the type of users that addresses the service articulated at regional level, the timing of calls, the places and forms of violence, as well as the effects generated by it both directly on victims and children (witnessing violence), reporting, where available, information details of social and personal data and providing information on the outcomes of the call.


More information

Service Population Register, demographic statistics and living conditions

Alessandra Capobianchi

Claudia Villante

Maria Giuseppina Muratore


Reference period: III quarter 2021

Date of Issue: 25 November 2021