The household isolation instruction as a result of coronavirus does not apply if you need to leave your home to escape domestic abuse. Even during lockdown, if you are in danger in your home, please leave and seek help. Call 999 in an emergency.
If you need urgent police help through the 999 service but cannot speak call 999, you will be connected to a phone operator who will ask which service you need.
On a mobile:
On a landline phone:
Help is available – services are open and able to provide support. It is important to know that you are not alone. Even if you are unable to leave your home at the moment, you can still access support through one of the support helplines and services below:
Next Link 0117 9250680 or online nextlinkhousing.co.uk
Victim Support 0300 3031972
National Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000247 or online nationaldahelpline.org
Men’s Advice Line 0808 8010327 mensadviceline.org.uk
You Are Not Alone - The Government have launched the ‘You Are Not Alone’ campaign in April 2020. Avon and Somerset Police have worked with local services to support this.
GOV.UK has information on support for victims of domestic violence during the coronavirus crisis
Safe Lives have published a guide to staying safe during COVID-19 for victims and survivors of domestic abuse
Women's Aid safety and support resources for survivors, friends, family, neighbours and community members
If you feel scared of your partner it is likely that you are experiencing domestic violence and abuse. Abuse and violence can be psychological, physical, financial or emotional. It can include:
Anyone can be a victim of abuse regardless of age, race, income, religion, belief, sex, disability, culture or sexual orientation. The abuser may be a family member or someone you are in or have been in a relationship with.
Domestic and sexual, abuse and violence is not acceptable. If you or someone you know is a victim, report it and get help.
Call 999 if a crime is happening now or you're in immediate danger.
Silent calls will work if you are not safe to speak – use the Silent Solution system and call 999 and then press 55 when prompted. If you can’t use a voice phone, you can register with the police text service – text REGISTER to 999. You will get a text which tells you what to do next. Do this when it is safe so you can text when you are in danger
How to report it if you are not in immediate danger:
If you think you are experiencing any type of abuse, it is important to remember that it is not your fault and that there is support available.
If you are unsure, go with your instincts, if it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. You may feel alone and that no-one can help you; but many people experience abuse and there are many services that can provide support.
You can speak to your teacher, GP, work colleague or any other trusted professional. Speaking to someone about what you are going through can help you to feel less alone and can support you in understanding your options.
A personal safety plan is a way of helping you to protect yourself. Women's Aid provide advice about making a personal safety plan. It helps you plan in advance for the possibility of future violence and abuse. It also helps you to think about how you can increase your safety either within the relationship, or if you decide to leave.
Provide support services, and can help arrange emergency accommodation, for women and girls who have experienced domestic or sexual abuse. Freephone: 0800 4700 280 or Call 0117 925 0680 (check the website for current opening hours) or Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Victim Support offer domestic abuse services for male victims and those who identify as male in Bristol. They offer safety planning, support through civil and criminal proceedings, access to emotional support, appropriate housing and more.
Call 0300 303 1972 or 07432 504692 or email email@example.com
Open Monday, Wednesday and Friday: 9:30am - 5:30pm and Tuesday and Thursday: 11am - 7pm
Please see this Bristol Men's Domestic Abuse Project leaflet for more information
Victim Support also provide free confidential support to male and female victims of all crimes including domestic abuse, call 0300 303 1972. There is also a 24-hour National Support line outside these hours, call 0808 168 9111.
Help for women experiencing domestic abuse. You’ll be able to talk confidentially to someone about your situation and find out what your options are. Call: 0808 2000 247. The phone line is open 24 hours day.
Have published the Survivor’s Handbook which has practical support and information for women experiencing domestic abuse.
Advisers provide support for male and female victims including crisis intervention, risk assessment and advocacy. 8am - 4pm daily, Monday to Sunday including bank holidays Call 0117 342 1495 / 1496.
Offer support for men and boys who are victims of domestic abuse. 0808 801 0327 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm
Offer support for men and boys who are victims of domestic abuse. 01823 334244. Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm
If you’re in a same-sex relationship you can also contact Galop, the national LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline. Call: 0800 999 5428 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Help for women and children in the Polish community to improve health, wellbeing and happiness by stopping domestic violence. Helpline number for victims of domestic abuse in Polish language 0300 3651700 or email email@example.com
Support groups for women held throughout Bristol. Free programme for any woman with experience of living with domestic violence and abuse, or has left the relationship. You can refer yourself or professionals can refer for you. Please contact Next Link on firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0117 9250680 to apply for a place and for further details.
A national organisation that specifically helps victims of domestic violence and abuse to obtain legal protection irrespective of their financial position. You can refer direct via their website www.referdirect.org.uk or download their app.
If you want someone to listen and give you emotional support, call the Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90.
If you or someone else in your family is being hurt at home, you can tell a teacher, a neighbour, a friend, a friend's parent or the police. Domestic abuse isn’t your fault.
You can call Childline on 0800 1111 for free. They won't tell anyone else you’re calling unless you’re in immediate danger. They can tell you where you can get help.
The Hide Out website also helps children and young people experiencing domestic abuse and violence.
Bristol City Council can:
Contact the Estate Management Service: call 0117 922 2200 (option four), Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 6pm, email email@example.com.
If you move to temporary housing because of domestic violence, you might be able to claim housing benefit for both properties. You can apply for housing benefit online.
Support for those who are concerned that their behaviour has become abusive and want to change is available from the Respect helpline 0808 8024040
The University of Bristol and Splitz Support Service in conjunction with Next Link are running a Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Programme in Bristol/North Somerset/South Gloucestershire as part of a larger research study. Men can be referred by services or can self-refer. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org 07976 225462.
Are you worried about friend, family, neighbour or work colleague? If you are worried or concerned about someone but are unsure how to support them, below you will find some useful packs which include practical and emotional support advice and tools.
DVA Friends and Family Booklet - If you are worried about a friend or relative who has been affected by domestic abuse, read this guide offers practical and emotional advice on how best to support them.
Using Abuse leaflet - If you are worried about a friend or relative who may be abusive towards their partner, read this guide offering safe practical advice. The guide was written in collaboration with Bristol City Council, Police and Crime Commissioners and RSVP, the dedicated service working with perpetrators of domestic abuse in Bristol.
Clare’s Law, or the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) allows members of the public the right to ask the police if their partner may pose a risk to them. Also, a member of the public can make enquiries into the partner of a close friend or family member.
If police checks show the person has a record of abusive offences, or suggest a risk of violence or abuse, the police will consider sharing this information.
If the police decide to share the information it will usually be to the person at risk. This is unless someone else is better placed to use the information to protect the person at risk from abuse (e.g. if the person at risk is a young person or a vulnerable adult).
Abuse in Relationships: Can You See It? - YouTube video from the This Is Abuse campaign
This Is Not An Excuse - website with resources for anyone experiencing domestic abuse, rape and sexual assault or child sexual exploitation.