Crimestoppers launch new campaign to challenge myths about domestic abuse across Lincolnshire
According to the crime charity, two women a week are killed by a current or former partner and research by the University of Lincoln has shown that some women, especially from some Eastern European countries, may not recognise the signs of being in an abusive relationship.
In a new campaign for the county, Crimestoppers spotlights domestic abuse myths, such as believing children will be taken away or you need to be married to get help. These types of unfounded fears may stop people who need help from seeking support.Crimestoppers is also reaching out to so-called bystanders – such as neighbours, colleagues, friends and family – who may have suspicions, but are too embarrassed or fearful of revenge to tell the authorities about their concerns.
Lydia Patsalides, Regional Manager for the East Midlands at the charity Crimestoppers, said: “The home should always be a safe place, but unfortunately for many adults and children, this is not always the case.“This Lincolnshire-focused campaign dispels myths around seeking support if you are experiencing domestic abuse as it could save and change lives, along with speaking up if you have suspicions.“If you know of someone who is a perpetrator of abuse and you do not feel able to go to the police directly, then please contact Crimestoppers anonymously. Our charity – which is independent of the police - can take information in over 140 different languages.“Whilst, due to anonymity, we cannot take information from victims of domestic abuse, anyone reading this who is a victim is strongly encouraged to reach out for help and support from Lincolnshire Domestic Abuse Specialist Service.”
With Crimestoppers and Fearless (the youth service of the charity), people stay 100 per cent anonymous when they pass on what they know.Should you suspect or know domestic abuse is happening and prefer to stay anonymous, you are asked to contact Crimestoppers’ UK Contact Centre by calling 0800 555 111 at any time or fill in the anonymous online form at Crimestoppers-uk.org. Young people can complete an online form at Fearless.org.In an emergency, or if you fear someone’s life is in danger, call 999 immediately.For people who are worried about their relationship or are experiencing domestic abuse in Lincolnshire, you are asked to seek help from Lincolnshire Domestic Abuse Specialist Service (LDASS). Visit their website www.ldass.org.uk or call them on 01522 510 041 from 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday.Detective Superintendent Suzanne Davies, Lead for Violence Against Women and Girls for Lincolnshire Police, said: “Domestic abuse is not inevitable or acceptable and it is never the fault of the victim. We want to break down the barriers that stop someone getting the help they need. Understanding what is abusive behaviour is vital. Abuse can be psychological or emotional – it doesn’t always involve violence. It could be control of you, your money or how you behave. This behaviour cannot be justified by mental health issues, alcohol or drug misuse, money worries or stress. Blame lays entirely with the abuser.
“There are specific barriers for Eastern European communities. It’s not true that we won’t help you unless you are English and it’s not true that we will take your children away if you report abuse to us. These are the myths that abusers will perpetuate and we want to reach victims with the truth. We will help you; we will believe you; we have translators where needed. You may not want to report to us but there is help and support for you regardless and we urge you to find out more from the Lincolnshire Domestic Abuse Specialist Service.
“We also want to reach those people who are worried about a friend, family member or neighbour. Please don’t turn a blind eye. Domestic abuse is not a private matter. Trust your instincts – talk to that person, tell us or Crimestoppers about your concerns. Nobody should have to live with domestic abuse.”People should be reassured that computer IP addresses are never traced, and no-one will ever know you contacted Crimestoppers or Fearless. For telephone calls, there is no caller line display, no 1471 facility and calls have never been traced.