https://www.ilriformista.it/cosa-significa-essere-al-fianco-delle-donne-h24-le-case-rifugio-e-quella-mamma-che-non-denuncio-per-non-far-cambiare-vita-ai-figli-377718/Before becoming a 24/7 operator of this job, I didn’t even know its existence well, I certainly never thought I’d become one.
The day the role was offered to me, I immediately expressed my doubts about feeling capable of covering this figure; the answer I received was: “No one is ever ready, but someone has to be”. And so began what has been a year of 24/7 mode.
Being a 24-hour operator means being available day and night in the territory of the province in which you operate. When an operator receives a report, the call can come from the emergency room or from the carabinieri and, after that phone call, everything sets in motion quickly. There, I come into play: the essential aspect is the readiness of my analytical skills, the one that will determine the result of the intervention.
The most complex part of my job is being able, in a very limited amount of time, to understand and read the person I’m dealing with. The woman who is waiting for me sitting in some waiting room has, in these cases, usually suffered violence. Trying to look into her eyes and asking her to speak to me, a perfect stranger, always has something unnatural, as if, in turn, I was contributing to violate her with unspeakable pain. Starting to establish a dialogue is the most difficult step for her, and for me.
We are sitting there facing each other and I, without showing it, have to strip off all emotion and put on the objective dress that the role requires; they are there to collect all the information necessary to frame the situation, determine its seriousness, carry out what we call the ‘risk assessment’.
Risk assessment refers to the risk range in which the person finds himself after being a victim of violence. The risk range is what a 24/7 operator must establish, it is determined on a case-by-case basis on the basis of the dynamics of violence that the victim has suffered, their current life situation, domicile, and it is what identifies the solutions to be put in place to safeguard the safety of the person.
When a woman is the victim of violence, what she needs to provide is, first of all, a safe place to stay: it is essential that the person is removed from the dynamic of violence in which she finds herself. The shelters are the place where, in most cases, the victim and I, based on her consent, go together after my intervention.
Unfortunately, my presence doesn’t always make any kind of difference. I remember that woman who, despite her death threats even in the presence of the police, she decided not to report, and went home. She didn’t want her children to have to move with her to a shelter, she didn’t want work to know the reason for her absence, and she didn’t think reporting would have prevented that man from banging her head against a bench again and again. a public place.
I watched her leave the hospital and go home.
I think my greatest fear is to discover, one day, that if I had said one more sentence, word, if only I had been more convincing, reassuring, I could have avoided yet another tragedy.
But then I think of the honor I have in being there, after that call, in that room, listening to all those stories, often never told, sealed up in the walls of a house, of all those voices that slowly whisper their stories to me and I think , to all those women who have now recovered their lives in an anti-violence centre.
In every city, province there is an operator who, like me, is ready to receive that call. Difficult as it is, every victim who goes to an emergency room or to the police takes the first step out of that cycle of violence. With that phone call, the possibilities that open up are not only reception in a shelter, there are social workers, lawyers, volunteer psychologists, who offer completely free services in every anti-violence center and, there are operators who, like me, even if they don’t always feel ready, they will be ready 24/7 for them.
This article is originally published on ilriformista.it