Everyone has the right to live free from fear, intimidation and abuse. No-one deserves to be abused or should have to accept intolerable behaviour. Wherever you live in the West Midlands, there is someone who can help if you are suffering from domestic abuse, whether that is the police or other local and national organisations.
Domestic abuse can happen to women and men, and to children. It can be committed by a partner or ex-partner, or a family member, in an existing or previous relationship. It can involve any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling or coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse.
Abuse can include the following:
- Psychological including coercive control
Jealousy, humiliation, degradation, put downs, isolation from family and friends, threats of suicide, using children to inform or report on you. Coercive control is now a criminal offence in its own right. It’s a pattern of behaviour that exerts power and coercion over a person, for example isolating a person, monitoring a person’s communications (telephone or on-line), controlling what they wear, isolating someone or taking control of aspects of their everyday life (such as where they go, who they see, what they do).
All forms of assault including beating, kicking, slapping, punching , burning, strangulation, stabbing or denying sleep.
Rape, enforced sex or prostitution, pornography or any sexual behaviour or activity which you find unacceptable.
Withholding money or always calling you to account for your spending.
Name calling or threats to harm you or your children.
At least one in four women experience domestic violence in their lifetime.
It is really important victims do not blame themselves, it is not their fault and they have not bought the abuse on themselves.
Deciding what to do can take time. Victims may wish to involve the police, talk to a support group such as Women’s Aid, or end the relationship. Whatever the victim decides safety is always most important.
It is recognised that children living within a household where domestic abuse is present are at risk of physical, emotional or physiological abuse even if the abuse is not intended towards them.
If you need help…
To talk to a trained and experience Public Protection officer, call West Midlands Police on 101. In an emergency 999.
The national domestic violence helpline number is 0808 2000 247- it is free to call and open 24 hours a day.
What will the police do?
The first priority for the police is to ensure the safety of the victim and children. They will bee sympathetic and speak to you separately from any person responsible for the abuse. The police can arrange medical aid if necessary and find a safe place for you and your children. The police work closely with the National Centre for Domestic Violence who can provide a free emergency injunction service within 24 hours (in most circumstances): www.ncdv.org.uk
- Emergency Accommodation
Gateway Refuge space in Solihull and Birmingham 0121 675 4249 or Solihull Community Housing 0121 717 1515.
- National Centre for Domestic Violence
0844 8044 999 or 0800 970 2070 (Freephone)
- Services for male victims
Talk it over – 0808 801 0327 www.mensadviceline.org.uk
- LGBT Support
Broken Rainbow 0300 999 5428
- Forced Marriage Helpline
The honour Network 0800 5999 247
- For children
NSPCC helpline 0808 800 5000
Banardo’s Children and Young Persons Counselling Service 0121 359 5333.
- Domestic Abuse Perpetrators
Respect Phoneline 0808 802 4040 www.respectphoneline.org.uk
- Womens Aid
Helpline (Mon-Fri) 0808 800 0028