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Norfolk Police shares 'you are not alone' message with victims of domestic abuse

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Norfolk Police is hoping to reassure victims and survivors of domestic abuse that they do not need to suffer in silence during the coronavirus pandemic.

It comes after officials at West Norfolk charity Pandora Project last week urged any women being abused while on lockdown to contact them – and following reports from national charity Refuge that its Domestic Abuse Helpline has seen a 25 per cent increase in calls and online requests for help since the lockdown.

Temporary Detective Superintendent Andy Coller, head of safeguarding at Norfolk Constabulary, said: "We realise that the challenges we currently face mean those who are vulnerable, such as victims of domestic abuse, whether children or adults, are more likely to be at risk during self-isolation.

Norfolk Police's 'You Are Not Alone' domestic abuse campaign (33141719)
Norfolk Police's 'You Are Not Alone' domestic abuse campaign (33141719)

"Norfolk Constabulary wants to reassure those who are victims, that you should not suffer in silence and alone, we are here to help you.

"A home can be more like prison for those living or sharing one with an abuser."

If you are in immediate danger, or know someone who is, you should still call 999 or call one of the organisations and charities listed below and on Norfolk Police's website.

Police want domestic abuse victims to know they are not alone
Police want domestic abuse victims to know they are not alone

"This is a particularly stressful time for those locked into an abusive situation and stress levels can be high. Our message to abusers is that your behaviour will not be excused, we take domestic abuse very seriously and will be dealing with incidents robustly.”

Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green added: "I would like to reassure victims and survivors of domestic abuse that my team has been, and continues to work tirelessly with our commissioned services to ensure the right help and support is out there.

"Supporting victims and reducing vulnerability is one of my absolute key priorities as Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner and now is a time more than ever when we must work together to continue to give a voice to the women, men and children in our county who have been or continue to be affected by this crime.

"My message to those who feel isolated and alone is simply, you are not. Whatever the situation, you do not need to live with the heartache, the pain or the trauma that you are suffering. Life can be better and there are people there to offer you support.”

There is also the Silent Solution system which helps filter out accidental or hoax 999 calls from those who need genuine police assistance.

If speaking or making an immediate sound would put you in danger and you need immediate help, call 999 and stay on the line, then press 55 when prompted and the call will be transferred to the police, who will know it is an emergency call.

Follow the Norfolk Constabulary account on Facebook and @NorfolkPolice on Twitter for their domestic violence messages under the hashtag #youarenotalone.

Domestic abuse services in the area:

  • SARC – Sexual Assault Referral Centre – The Harbour Centre: 01603 276381 (24/7) / Email: contact@theharbourcentre.co.uk / Covers: Norfolk / https://www.theharbourcentre.co.uk/
  • Daisy Programme: 01953 880903 / Email: help@daisyprogramme.org.uk / Covers: Breckland

Additional national helplines and services:

  • Refuge - National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247 or contact the helpline via Refuge’s contact form at www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk / https://www.refuge.org.uk/
  • Respect (working with abusers to change their behaviour and male victims of domestic abuse): 020 3559 6650 / http://respect.uk.net/

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