Domestic Violence does not Take Holidays
With the Whitsun holiday coming up, police and local charities are concerned that there may be an increase in domestic abuse. This means pulling together extra resources to deal with the anticipated demand in intervention.
Why Are Bank Holidays Dangerous for DV Victims?
According to the Office of National Statistics
, there are 1.2 million female victims of domestic abuse in the last year
, along with 700,000 males
. Women are also more likely to experience intimate abuse, which includes domestic violence, across all types of abuse in relation to men. Both men and women may be at further risk during the bank holiday
when extra factors such as binge drinking
and potential drug abuse
A study by Cardiff University found that where there was a sharp decline in binge drinking, there was a 10% fall in people suffering from serious violence
. Although drinking may be the catalyst for abuse, charities such as Women's Aid
argue that most perpetrators of domestic abuse are violent whether or not alcohol or drugs are involved.
Bank holidays and drinking are not only exclusive to the perpetrator, they may also be used by the victim as a coping mechanism. This is why, along with providing shelter and counselling, domestic violence charities include drug and alcohol support.
Don't go Back to Abuse
During the bank holiday, it may feel like you're seeing more and more 'happy'
couples out and about spending quality time together. Understandably, this can be frustrating and, in some instances, it can lead both men and women back into their abusive relationships
. It's important to remember that domestic abuse is often a hidden form of abuse. It not only covers physical contact but psychological, sexual, financial and emotional abuse. What you may be seeing in those happy couples over the bank holiday is superficial
happiness, their home life could be a living hell.
According to the Living Without Abuse
charity, domestic violence has more repeat victims than any other crime. After TV shows such as Murdered By My Boyfriend, it's essential that those in abusive relationships get out as quickly as possible and find the right support when they have left to ensure their safety and the safety of their children.
Simpson Millar LLP offers legal aid (subject to financial qualification) to those who have been victims of domestic violence so they can access the right legal help, such as non-molestation
and occupation orders
, to keep themselves and their loved ones safe. We also have links with local and national charities to point you in the right direction to receive counselling and support throughout the process.