Domestic Abuse in Dorset
A message from Lesley Spain – Principal Learning Manager, Skills & Learning
“During this extraordinary time, Skills & Learning are acutely aware of the challenging and difficult situations that people experiencing domestic abuse can find themselves in.
There is no excuse for domestic abuse, whether it be physical, sexual, financial or psychological and Skills & Learning are committed to supporting all our learners who experience any of these things.
Unfortunately all our normal ‘face to face’ courses and support are currently unavailable, however, we are committed to moving these services online as soon as possible. In the meantime we will be sharing, via this web page, other information and services available within the county and nationally.
Please remember you are not alone and support is only a ‘click’ or a phone call away.”
A message from Superintendent Gemma Morris of Dorset Police
“Sadly, Covid-19 may cause a rise in domestic abuse and the cycle of violence may intensify with people having to isolate themselves, and those who may be experiencing it may be unsure how to access support.
“We are committed to the safety of children and families experiencing domestic abuse and it is important that victims know how and where to get advice and support.”
You can listen to an audio clip by Supt Gemma Morris, talking about domestic violence and how to get help.
A Message from The Police and Crime Commissioner for Dorset, Martyn Underhill
“We’re in an unprecedented situation and we have to prepare for all eventualities, which unfortunately includes the possibility that a period of mass isolation means we’ll see an increase in cases of domestic abuse.
“Sadly, some children could be safer when they attend school regularly, as teachers are able to spot signs that something might be wrong at home and report this to the authorities.
“I want to reassure victims that despite the current uncertainty, support is still available for them and they don’t need to wait for lockdown or self-isolation to end before they get help.
“Remember, domestic abuse doesn’t just mean violence – it also includes the new offences of coercive and controlling behaviour in which perpetrators psychologically manipulate their victims. If you’re experiencing any form of abuse you do not have to put up with it, and even if you don’t want to report it to the police there is a wide range of support available to you, such as the Victim Support Live Chat service.”
Help & Support
If you or your children are in immediate danger you should call 999. However, there are many other ways you can access help from specialist services.
In a non-emergency, you can also report a crime 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 101, using the 101 webchat, or the online crime reporting form – both on the force website here.
There’s also a useful AskNed system that provides online advice on a range of issues and by signing up to Neighbourhood Alert regular updates and information can be received from the OPCC.
Dorset Council – You First – 0800 032 5204
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole – Outreach (24 hours) – 01202 710 777
Victim Support provides emotional and practical help to victims of crime in Dorset, and have a dedicated team which specialises in helping victims of domestic abuse. They provide a Live Chat web-based support service that will be available to victims 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
You can get help from the Dorset team by calling 0300 3030 163 (Monday to Friday 9am-6.30pm) The service is confidential and free to use.
The National Domestic Violence Helpline is a freephone number available on 0808 2000247 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The Safe Lives portal provides advice for victims and professionals
Women’s Aid – email and online chat room 10-12pm Monday to Friday
24 hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247
Respect helpline: 0808 802 4040 (for anyone worried that they may be harming someone else)
Men’s advice line: 0808 801 032
Free Train Tickets for Victims of Domestic Abuse
Victims of domestic abuse can contact the charity Women’s Aid, or a domestic abuse helpline or local outreach service, and if necessary a refuge space will be found and the train ticket obtained on the woman’s behalf. Support is also available for male victims.
Click here for more information from BBC News.
Boots The Chemist
From 1/5/2020, victims of domestic abuse will be able to access safe spaces at Boots pharmacy consultation rooms across the country, where they can contact specialist domestic abuse services for support and advice. The scheme is in response to the desperate situation facing many victims who are isolating with perpetrators during lockdown.
Find your nearest Boots chemist here.
BCHA Domestic Violence Outreach
Domestic Violence Outreach – Dedicated Service for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole
Telephone: 01202 710777
(9am – 5pm 7 days a week)
The Dorset charity, Sexual Trauma and Recovery Services (STARS Dorset), is increasing the availability of its Telephone Support Line throughout the COVID-19 period.
STARS Dorset’s Telephone Support Line is for anyone who has been affected by sexual violence such as rape, child abuse and sexual assault at anytime in their life. As well as the charity’s existing clients, people who have not accessed their services before can call for support and those who are supporting survivors of sexual violence in a personal or professional capacity can also use the service. In addition, the charity will be increasing the availability of their online Live Chat service, which is available through their website, www.starsdorset.org.
The Charity’s Telephone Support Line number is 01202 308855 and the service will be available at the following times:
Mondays 10am -12pm and 3pm – 5pm,
Tuesdays 10am -12pm and 3pm – 5pm,
Wednesdays 10am -12pm, 3pm – 5pm and 7.30pm – 9.30pm
Thursdays 10am -12pm, 3pm – 5pm and 7.30pm – 9.30pm
Fridays 10am -12pm, 3pm – 5pm and 7.30pm – 9.30pm
The charity’s Counselling Service and Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA) Service will continue to provide support but no face to face support will be available until further notice.
For general enquiries (9am to 5pm Monday to Friday) call the charity’s main number 01202 308840 or email: email@example.com.
For those wanting to submit a referral, all relevant information can be found on their website here.