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York Gives Domestic Abuse The Red Card

in a city-wide media campaign coinciding with the World Cup which kicks off tomorrow (12 June).

6:55am 12th June 2014

The city wide campaign kicks off toay to coincide with the start of the World Cup

During the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, a similar campaign ran to raise awareness of abuse in the home, and calls to its helpline rose by one third. This links to research by Lancaster University into the connection between the World Cup and domestic abuse rates which reveals that in one force area in England and Wales, incidents increased by 38% when England played and lost and increased by 26% when they won.

This year, while the action takes place in Brazil, the awareness campaign will run alongside the charity’s helpline offering advice and support on 03000 110 110 while, as ever, reminders are being issued to call 999 in an emergency.

Like this winter’s successful anti domestic violence campaign which prompted a 25% increase in reports to IDAS, the advertising will run on the sides of buses in York and will also be evident in pubs, clubs, bars and other places where sports are regularly screened.

Councillor Tracey Simpson-Laing, City of York Council’s Cabinet Member for Homes and Safer Communities, said:

“The World Cup is a fantastic event which we hope everyone can enjoy safely, but domestic violence is unacceptable at any time. So we want to encourage more people to give it the red card through this campaign which builds on earlier work including our recent drive to stop violence against women through the White Ribbon campaign.”

Sarah Hill, Director of IDAS, said:

“The impact the World Cup has on domestic violence is largely based on people drinking more than usual. Alcohol should never be used as an excuse for violence but where people drink more we do see an increase in violent or abusive behaviour.

“IDAS can offer advice, accommodation and support to anyone living in fear of domestic abuse and we’d appeal for people to get in touch if they are concerned about their partner’s behaviour. For people who are worried that they might be abusive we can also signpost to organisations who can help them if they want to change.”

Chief Inspector Alisdair Dey of York Safer Neighbourhood Team, said:

“Domestic abuse is a hidden crime and often fuelled by alcohol. It can take a great deal of courage for someone to accept that a relationship is an abusive one. IDAS provide a vital service to victims offering advice, options and support at a very distressing time in their lives.

“It’s important that victims are aware of the support available to them and that they have the confidence to come forward and seek help. Raising awareness of the services available is a vital part of encouraging victims to make that important step.”

To report immediate danger, call 999, or if you are experiencing domestic abuse, whether physical, verbal, psychological, emotional, sexual or financial abuse, call 03000 110 110 or visit www.idas.org.uk or call the police on 101.

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