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Agencies across Norfolk continue vital work to help victims of domestic abuse

Partners across the county are joining forces to continue to reinforce the message that victims of domestic abuse should not feel alone during the current pandemic.

Members of the Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Board (DASVB)*, made up of agencies including Norfolk Constabulary, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Norfolk (OPCCN) and Norfolk County Council (NCC) have re-launched a series of posters aimed at highlighting the issue.

A range of social media assets have also been designed, tying in with the ‘See Something, Hear Something, Say Something’ initiative, led by Norfolk County Council and the Norfolk Safeguarding Children Partnership, which was launched last month to encourage everyone to work together to help the vulnerable.

DASVB-DA-Young-Man-poster-127x178The posters carry the wording “If you see or hear anything that makes you feel worried, such as aggressive shouting, hitting, crying, things breaking or are concerned someone appears frightened and on edge – let us know.”

The aim is to urge families, neighbours and friends to speak out if they fear someone is subject to domestic abuse, while encouraging the victim to seek help too.

Gavin Thompson, Director of Policy, Commissioning and Communications at the OPCCN and chair of the DASVB, said: “It is vital we continue to work together to spread the message that domestic abuse is not acceptable in Norfolk and those who have or continue to be affected by this crime get the support they need to seek help.

“It is also incumbent on us all play our part in helping those who may feel even more isolated and unable to speak out in the current situation.

“If you See Something or Hear Something then please Say Something so we can help protect those most at risk of harm and ensure they know they are not alone.”

The launch of the posters come only a week after the DASVB funded a series of radio advertisements across the county pushing home the same message – Norfolk Says #NoToDomesticAbuse.

Detective Superintendent Andy Coller, Head of Safeguarding at Norfolk Constabulary, said: “We are aware that there may well be incidents of domestic violence we do not know about during the lockdown.  As restrictions are eased, we want to make sure victims know we are still here for them to report those cases to us.

“We still believe the pressures of the pandemic could lead to a heightened risk of domestic abuse and this is another step in our partnership campaign to reassure those in need of help that they are not alone.”

Sara Tough, Executive Director of Children’s Services at Norfolk County Council, added: “It’s important that, as restrictions in response to the pandemic are relaxed, people know we are still here for them.  The lockdown is difficult for everybody, so we are keen to reach out to parents who might be struggling. We also urge family members and neighbours to be vigilant, so that we can protect people from harm. As always our safeguarding service is still here to take your calls.”

The * Norfolk DASVB supports the delivery of Norfolk County Community Safety Partnership (NCCSP) objectives.

The NCCSP is made up of local authorities, police and housing providers with others, who are committed to working in partnership with victims and communities to tackle the key crime and disorder issues for Norfolk, ensuring that our county remains as one of the safest parts of the country.

The posters, which are based on a series of films released by partners last year to show anyone can be affected by domestic abuse regardless of gender, sexuality, ethnicity or age, are available to download on the Norfolk County Council website here>>

How to get help

If you need to speak to someone about domestic abuse then please call 999 in an emergency or to make a report to police, call 101.

If you can’t speak or make a sound, Silent Solution allows you to call 999 followed by pressing 55 when promoted and it will be transferred to police who will know it’s an emergency call.

Silent Solution

The Silent Solution system helps filter out accidental or hoax 999 calls from those who need genuine police assistance.

If you are calling from a mobile phone and 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.

If you are calling from a landline, Silent Solution does not apply as it is less likely to call 999 by accident. If an emergency call is made and no one speaks and only background noise is heard and an operator does not know whether an emergency service is needed, you will be connected to a police call handler.

Information about where you are calling from on a landline will be automatically available to call handlers to help provide a police response.

Norfolk and Suffolk Victim Care offer a 24hr support line for immediate emotional and practical support for all victims of crime. Call 0300 303 3706.

Visit the OPCCN web page here>> for more information on help numbers for organisations and charities that can offer tailored DA support or visit the Norfolk Police or Norfolk County Council websites for more help.