Force supports White Ribbon Day to end domestic abuse
Cambridgeshire Constabulary is supporting a campaign to end domestic abuse with a direct appeal to offenders.
This Thursday(25) is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, as well as White Ribbon Day, which calls to end male violence against women and girls.
Running from White Ribbon Day until Human Rights Day on December 10, the force will be supporting the 16 Days of Action Against Domestic Violence by raising awareness of the devastating impact of domestic abuse and the support available to those who are suffering or concerned about a loved one.
As well as encouraging people to report crimes, a key aim of the campaign will be to warn offenders that domestic abuse is not acceptable and that the police and partner agencies will work tirelessly around the clock to bring offenders to justice.
Between April and October this year, the force recorded 7,336 domestic abuse crimes, a two per cent increase compared to the same time last year, reflecting a year-on-year increase in reports over the past five years.
Detective Superintendent John Massey, head of protecting vulnerable people, said: "There are people out there experiencing abuse who are feeling vulnerable and afraid and this is not acceptable. Domestic abuse is against the law and we are absolutely committed to bringing all criminals to justice while providing people experiencing abuse with the help and support they deserve.
“Offenders often think they can get away with abuse behind closed doors and without consequences and we want that to stop. We want to ensure there is no hiding place for those who cause misery and suffering to those they claim to love and we will pursue offenders to the fullest extent. We will also engage offenders in programmes to prevent reoffending.”
Throughout the campaign, the force will be highlighting on social media some of the signs to look out for and all of the discreet ways of reaching out. Members of the public will be urged to report concerns and talk openly to loved ones to encourage them to get help.
Det Supt Massey added: “We will be reminding people experiencing abuse that you do not have to suffer in silence. There is no excuse for abuse and we, alongside other dedicated partner agencies, are here to keep you safe and support you along the way. There are a number of specialist police teams who put the needs of domestic abuse sufferers at the forefront of everything they do.”
As well as investigating and responding to crimes, police can help in a number of ways: Officers can issue Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPOs) and Stalking Protection Orders (SPOs) to stop the abuser coming into contact with you.
A referral can be made to agencies such as the Domestic Abuse Alliance, for support in arranging non-molestation orders and family orders with the help of legal aid. The police Victim and Witness Hub can provide emotional and practical support. You can request a domestic disclosure through Clare’s Law. Officers can change your locks and arrange for other home safety measures to be put in place. You and your children can be taken somewhere safe to stay.
Officers can refer you to partner agencies for longer term housing solutions. You can ask to be seen by a female police officer if you would prefer. An interpreter can be provided when you call or visit. You can be signposted to further specialist services.
The White Ribbon Day campaign encourages men to fulfil the White Ribbon Promise to never commit, excuse or remain silent about male violence against women and to collectively take action to change behaviour by engaging with men and boys.
Staff at Cambridgeshire Constabulary will join thousands across the country in making the White Ribbon Day Promise, to never commit, excuse or remain silent about domestic violence, and will be encouraging others to do the same.
Police and Crime Commissioner, Darryl Preston added: “As a former frontline police officer, I have witnessed some of the very worst of human nature whereby a person is abused by the person they love in their homes – the place we should all be safe.
"White Ribbon Day is an important opportunity to remind people experiencing domestic and sexual abuse that support is out there. As a White Ribbon Ambassador myself, I am committed to supporting partners to call out this kind of abuse, and as your Commissioner, I will continue to invest in specialist support services to make sure people get the support they need when they need it.”
Together with partner agencies, the force will be hosting a 24-hour domestic abuse question and answer session on its Instagram account @cambscops on Monday November 29.
Safeguarding experts will be on hand to answer domestic abuse related questions from members of the public from 11am. Questions can be submitted and then answers will be emailed or posted anonymously.
The domestic abuse pages of the police website provide information and advice on how to stay safe (even if you aren’t ready to leave an abusive relationship), how to spot the signs of abuse, who to contact for support, how to get legal assistance and how to report crimes.
If you think you think you might be committing domestic abuse, you should stop immediately and do the following: Contact Respect: https://respectphoneline.org.uk
Visit the Everyman Project website: https://www.everymanproject.co.uk
Talk to your GP or arrange counselling. You can report crimes online or by calling 101 or 999 in an emergency.