One of the many downsides to the coronavirus crisis has been the plight of domestic abuse victims, and now, with new extra funding, Greater Manchester Deputy Mayor, Beverley Hughes, is urging people to use the services which now have increased funding from the Ministry of Justice, via Greater Manchester Combined Authority, to provide more counselling and more staff to cope with demand.
“The new restrictions require people to stay at home, but for many people home isn’t a safe environment” she says “We know for some victims the pandemic has meant spending more time at home with their potential abuser, and as a result this means victims have been cut off from their existing support networks. It has also added to extra stress and anxiety, therefore the extra funding is needed now more than ever so services can still be delivered under remote conditions.
“Our message to victims of domestic abuse is; ‘You are not alone, and support is still here if you need it’” she adds “I also want to remind people that if home isn’t a safe place, you are allowed to leave and stay away from home overnight to escape risk of harm, such as domestic abuse, despite the restrictions – this is a very important message.”
Amongst 26 Greater Manchester organisations receiving a total of £571,196 funding are Salford Women’s Aid and Salford Foundation; and Detective Superintendent Gwyn Dodd of Greater Manchester Police, says “I would like to reassure all victims of domestic abuse that help and support is available across Greater Manchester and beyond, and a key area we are focusing on, both within GMP, and with partners across our local communities.
“Domestic abuse remains an absolute priority for GMP, and as the country now find itself in another lockdown, we recognise the increased risk this means to victims” she adds “The current climate will not affect our response to domestic abuse, and I would like to make it clear that help is available, and we will respond to protect our communities. I would also like to reiterate the message that those at risk of harm are able to leave their homes, regardless of the restrictions in place.”
By the Salford Star
First published by Salford Star, 7 January 2021
If you, or someone you know, is feeling anxious and unsafe in their home, visit www.gmvictims.org.uk or call 0161 200 1950 for help and advice, including how to access local support services. You don’t have to report anything to the police if you don’t want to.
If you, or someone you know, has come to harm or is at risk of coming to harm, you can report this to Greater Manchester Police via their Livechat facility at www.gmp.police.uk or call 101. If you, or someone else is in immediate danger always dial 999.
If you are calling 999 from a mobile phone and you are unable to speak, you can use the Silent Solution by pressing 55 when prompted. Once you press 55, the operator will then transfer the call to the relevant police force as an emergency.
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