Worried about reports of rising domestic violence during lockdown, Polish teen Krysia Paszko set up a website purporting to be a cosmetics shop that actually offers victims covert help.
“I was inspired by this French idea, where by going to the pharmacy and asking for the number 19 mask, you could signal that you were a victim of abuse,” the Warsaw high school student told AFP.
The 18-year-old decided that Poland could also use some kind of code during the pandemic, when families have been cooped up together under stress, with less privacy and more abuse.
During the first lockdown that began in March last year, the Centre for Women’s Rights, a Polish NGO, observed a 50-percent increase in calls to its domestic violence hotline.
The World Health Organization also reported a surge in Europe.
Paszko created the Facebook page Rumianki i Bratki (Chamomiles and Pansies) in April 2020.