28th Sep, 2020

'It's not okay' - domestic abuse refuges are open say agencies

Ross Crawford 26th Apr, 2020

DON’T suffer domestic abuse in silence – that’s the message from across the Redditch and Alcester area.

Figures show a marked spike in domestic violence since the introduction of the lockdown to tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

But the word from agencies is that help is at hand for those suffering it.

The Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia, John Campion, is urging those who don’t feel safe at home, and are at risk of abuse, to speak up so they can get help.

He says support services and places of refuge are still very much available so that, if needs be, victims can be safely removed and taken to alternative accommodation.

“I don’t want people to be suffering in silence and thinking that they have no option but to stay in lockdown with someone who is abusing them, be it physically or emotionally,” said Mr Campion.

“I would also encourage friends, relatives and neighbours to be mindful of what may be happening behind closed doors.

“If you’re concerned about someone, your call could make a huge difference to someone’s safety.”

Detective Superintendent Damian Pettit, Head of Vulnerability and Safeguarding, added: “Domestic abusers can intentionally isolate victims from help and support as part of their actions, and, during the current Covid-19 restrictions we are very aware that there may be victims who are even more restricted from seeking support.

“I would urge anyone experiencing abuse or concerned for someone who may be being abused to call the police who will be able to help on 101 or 999 in an emergency.”

Alcester and Studley are in Stratford District and there the domestic abuse support service ‘Refuge’ and helpline remain open to provide information and support on 0800 408 1552 or 999 in an emergency.

“At this difficult time it is important everyone knows that there is a huge amount of support available to those who find themselves victims of domestic abuse,” said community portfolio holder Councillor Sarah Whalley-Hoggins.

She added: “Remember you are not alone. Domestic abuse is never okay and you do not need to suffer in silence. Help is at hand and support services continue to be available across Warwickshire during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

For local information click here

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