The World Health Organisation has spent the last twelve months worrying about two major crises. The first is the Covid-19 pandemic, but the second is what they’ve described as a shadow pandemic; domestic abuse. Within the UK, the National Domestic Abuse Helpline has reported a 34% rise in contacts and calls and the police recorded a 10% increase in domestic abuse offences in the year ending September 2020.
For many who have found themselves caught in a lockdown with an abusive spouse or partner, the experience of abuse may have become heightened or magnified, and it may feel difficult to leave the household as a result of lockdown restrictions. However, there is help and support available and it’s important to remember that organisations and authorities across the country have put strategies in place to help people find the safety and security they deserve.
Ask for Ani
Pharmacies across the country are operating a safe word scheme ‘Ask for Ani’. If you believe you are experiencing domestic abuse, this includes non-violent abuse such as gaslighting, economic abuse, threats and intimidation, emotional abuse, online abuse, and sexual abuse, you can go to your local pharmacy and ‘Ask for Ani’. The pharmacy will then provide you access to a safe and private place, access to a phone, and offer support from the police and domestic abuse charities.
Rail to Refuge
Women’s Aid and The Rail Delivery Group are offering free train travel for people escaping domestic abuse. The programme runs until the end of March 2021. Information on how to obtain a ticket is available here.
How Jarmans Solicitors can help
Our team of highly experienced family law experts are able to help with non-molestation orders or occupation orders, and can also help with divorce proceedings, financial settlements, and child custody disputes. Our team are also available for a free 15-minute pre-bookable phone call, enabling you to find a safe space and time to speak. Just contact us to book a meeting.
Our compassionate and empathetic team will always listen and will never judge. We work with families of all shapes and sizes and in all kinds of situations and if we can’t help you, we’ll make sure that we refer you to someone who can.
Most importantly, if you have found yourself in a situation where you feel unsafe in your home, reach out, there will be a sympathetic and understanding ear at the end of the phone or email.