Domestic Violence

What is it? Domestic violence is any threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between adults who are or have been in a relationship, or between family members. It can affect anybody, regardless of their gender or sexuality.
The violence can be psychological, physical, sexual or emotional. It can include honour based violence, female genital mutilation, and forced marriage.

Domestic abuse does not just mean that your partner is hitting you. The abuse can be physical, sexual or verbal. Domestic violence can also include many things, such as the constant breaking of trust, psychological games, harassment and financial control. It can impact adults in all types of relationships and can also involve violence between parents and children.

If you are in an abusive relationship, there are three important steps you must take:

  1. Recognise that it is happening to you,
  2. Accept that you are not to blame,
  3. Get help and support.

Reporting domestic violence

In an emergency, call 999. Domestic violence is treated very seriously by the police, and they will take action to protect you.

If it is not an emergency, you could contact your local police station and discuss your situation with them. You can also contact independent organisations such as Victims’ Support to ask for help and advice.

Police and social workers will use tact and care in order to protect you, and to make sure that you get the help you need. They can put you in touch with volunteer organisations who provide refuge accommodation where you’ll be safe.