Housing Shortage Affects Abused Victims

By Sylvia Gonzalez
NewsWest 9

Odessa - A battered women's shelter in Odessa is seeing more women coming through their doors and the oil boom may have a lot to do with it.

"None of it was worth it if I was going to be disrespected and made to feel like I wasn't worth anything," said a victim of abuse.

It took months before this victim of abuse came forward and sought help. Crisis Center Shelter Director Renee Morris, said victims of abuse are coming forward because there is more community awareness and because there is a housing shortage.

"The shortage of housing of being able to leave the abuse and somewhere to go, and our community at this point doesn't have a lot of options considering about housing," said Morris.

For the past months Angel House has been to its full capacity, it holds 24 clients that's including women and children. Since this is the only available housing to these battered women they keep busy.

"This is the only place that's available, which is great because we are available, but when we are full that causes another problem, when that problem arises they seek other measures to help these victims.

"When we're full that causes another problem so we do refer out, sometimes it's advantageous to get them out of the city, and sometimes out of the state, so we help relocate them," said Morris.

Morris said if more housing was available, she would see less women in the shelter.

"I think that is a key point that if they don't have somewhere to go most likely they're going to stay in the abuse" said Morris.