Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Since the outbreak of Coronavirus and the nationwide lockdown that ensued, we’ve all been greatly encouraged to spend more time at home. However, for many, home is not the safest place.
During the lockdown, the National Domestic Abuse Helpline saw a 25% increase in calls from those suffering in abusive situations in the home, and, sadly, this figure has remained high.
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month; a time dedicated to unifying those across the world who have been victims of domestic violence. Anyone can become a victim of domestic abuse, which is why raising awareness is so crucial.
With many now spending more time in the home, either due to Government restrictions, shielding, or encouragement from their employer, being able to recognise the signs of abusive behaviour and speak out, or support those experiencing abuse, is more important than ever.
What is domestic abuse?
A common misconception about domestic abuse is that the term refers only to the harm that is physically suffered.
It’s important to remember that abuse does not always relate to physical violence or harm; abusive behaviours can take a number of different forms.
Domestic abuse causes harm whether physical or verbal, and ‘coercive control’ refers to all of the non-physical methods an abuser may use to intimidate, harm, punish, frighten, humiliate or threaten a partner.
Our article on coercive control provides further information on the signs of non-violent abusive behaviours.
I’m a victim of domestic abuse – where can I turn for help?
You can contact the 24-hour freephone National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0800 2000 247.
If you’re in immediate danger, dial 999 and make a report to the police. If you are in a situation where it could be unsafe for you to speak on the phone, dial 999 and press 55 on your keypad when prompted, and do not hang up.
At DRN, we operate an expert legal service for victims of domestic abuse. When working with a DRN solicitor, you can expect to receive continual support throughout your case. If you’d like to speak confidentially with a member of our team, please contact us on 01282 433241 and we will be more than happy to provide further information on the options that are available to you.