The BBC have today published an article detailing the increase in reporting of domestic abuse incidents. This article set out against a background of austerity and budget cuts that the police are dealing with an over whelming number of reports to them and demands on their service in the face of the current economic climate. Thankfully in the latest budget the Chancellor announced there would be no further cuts to the Policing budget, this year, whilst still considering ways to protect those who are victims of stalking from those whom they have not been in a relationship with or who are not family members.
Is this the beginning of a change in attitude by society in general towards inter relationship violence and abuse? Only time will tell but I am very hopeful that this significant increase demonstrates that the years of campaigning and awareness raising is paying off and that more victims feel emboldened to come forward, seek advice and take steps to safeguard themselves and their families.
We will continue to need our laws updating and modernising with the ever changing modern ways of communicating with each other. If as a society however we all make a stand within our own families, in support of our friends and neighbours, by simply our own conduct towards each other, I am hopeful that one by one, by mirroring our own behaviour, we can both support our loved ones but also demonstrate that abusive behaviour will not be tolerated. The biggest changes come when as a society we all agree what is acceptable and what is not.
Change however is not easy, the first step is to recognise that help is needed and, then to accept it. More information is available from your Local Domestic Abuse support organisations in your local area, the Cafcass website www.cafcass.gov.uk, AHIMSA www.ahimsa.org.uk or ourselves. Come in and have a chat for a free half hour for further guidance on domestic abuse issues within your relationship.
Let’s make this Christmas a time of peace, love and tolerance, the beginning for change within our own home for ourselves and our children.
BBC article – www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-35093837
Plymouth Herald article – www.plymouthherald.co.uk/Violent-Plymouth-dad-bit-partner-tried-strangle/story-28367673-detail/story.html