Victims of domestic abuse urged not to suffer in silence during lockdown
- Credit: Archant
Suffolk’s police and crime commissioner has encouraged victims of abuse to seek help and not suffer in silence during the coronavirus lockdown.
Tim Passmore said he knew victims were facing the additional trauma of having to spend time at home with their abusers.
His message follows a recent surge in calls to the National Domestic Abuse Helpline.
Mr Passmore, said: “Supporting victims of crime is absolutely key to my role.
“I commission many services to support victims and I am very pleased to say, thanks to the commitment of the organisations involved, this support is still available, so I would urge victims not to suffer in silence.
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“This pandemic is impacting on every single one of us in one way or another, but I am sadly very aware that victims of domestic abuse are also facing the additional trauma of having to spend time at home with abusive partners with no chance of getting out to see friends and family for support.
“Regardless of the situation we are in, I want to reassure victims that support services continue to work tirelessly to support you.
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“Help is still available – online or on the phone – so I continue to encourage victims to seek help.
“Please remember you are not alone, reach out if you need help.
“In an emergency, call 999 using the silent solution if you need to – just add 55 when prompted and the call will be transferred to the police, who will know it is an emergency call.”
Last week, the Home Secretary launched an awareness raising campaign highlighting that help was still available to anyone at risk of, or experiencing abuse.
The campaign, launched under the social media hashtag #YouAreNotAlone, aims to reassure victims that support services remain available.
Priti Patel also announced that the Home Office was working with charities and the Domestic Abuse Commissioner to provide an additional £2 million to bolster helplines and online support.
Although the government has confirmed that victims are able to leave home to flee to refuges, concerns have been raised over other sources of support, such as churches and hairdressers, no longer being accessible, leading the Centre for Social Justice to issue a new report urging everyone to watch for signs of domestic abuse among neighbours.