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somewhere to feel at home


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Are you afraid of someone who is or was close to you? • Do they criticise or humiliate you? • Are they always checking up on you? • Do they tell you that their behaviour is your fault? • Do they make excuses for their behaviour? • Does their jealousy stop you from seeing your friends and family? • Are you worried about the effect any of this may have on you and your children?

What is domestic violence and abuse? Domestic violence and abuse is when your partner, ex-partner or a family member hurts you or threatens to hurt you, scares, humiliates or controls you. It is not always physical. Any person, including both men and women, can experience domestic violence and abuse regardless of race, ethnic or religious group, wealth, sexual orientation, age, disability or lifestyle. It may include: • Physical violence • Emotional/psychological abuse – putdowns, verbal abuse and humiliation, blaming, isolation from family and friends. • Sexual abuse – rape, unwanted sexual contact, forcing sex with others, making you watch / take part in pornography or engage in prostitution. • Financial abuse – having to account for everything you spend, being kept without money, preventing you from getting / keeping a job. • Harassment – being watched, being followed, being pestered, receiving unwanted phone calls or text messages. If you are in an abusive relationship and want to stop the violence or leave, there are a number of agencies that can help you. You are not alone and you are not to blame. Support and advice is available for you and your family.

Leaving safely See the advice on page 6 and if possible and safe to do so: • Have some money saved in case you need to use a taxi or bus. • Make sure you have access to a phone. • Have a small bag already packed with an extra set of keys, money, clothes for a few days, toiletries and important documents (e.g. birth certificates, passports, bank account details, benefit documents, medical cards, court orders, marriage certificate). • Keep important numbers (emergency and personal) on your phone and on a list in your bag. • Teach your children how to keep safe and dial 999, try to take them with you along with a few of their favourite toys. • Take essential medicines that you or your children may need. • Leave only when it is safe to do so. Always think about exit routes. • If you have an injunction, keep it with you at all times and send a copy to the police.

Cross-government definition of domestic violence and abuse Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. This can encompass but is not limited to the following types of abuse: • • • • •

Psychological Physical Sexual Financial Emotional

Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate and / or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, Page 3

resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour. Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten their victim. This definition includes so-called Honour Based Violence (HBV), Forced Marriage (FM) and Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) which can be defined as follows : • Honour based violence (HBV) is a crime or incident which has or may have been

committed to protect or defend the honour of the family and / or community. • A Forced Marriage (FM) is a marriage conducted without the valid consent of one or both parties and where duress is a factor. • Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a collective term for a range of procedures which involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for nonmedical reasons. It is sometimes referred to as female circumcision or female genital cutting.

The truth about domestic violence and abuse Myth: Domestic violence and abuse is about losing your temper, that’s all… Fact: Some people argue that an abuser has lost their temper and is out of control. In fact they are very much in control. Abusers are often very selective about where they hit their partners / family (they often wait until they are alone and make sure bruises can be concealed). Many abusers use emotional or psychological control to demonstrate their level of power. Myth: If you’re jealous of your partner it shows that you love them. Fact: Jealousy is about possession and control, not love. It is often used as an excuse for the use of violence in a relationship, but when we love someone we encourage and support them rather than limit and isolate them. Myth: It only happens in poor families. Fact: Anyone can be abused regardless of their income. Abusers are just as likely to be wealthy and successful as they are to be unemployed or in low paid work. Myth: If a person is in a relationship and does not give consent for sex, it is not rape. Fact: Sex without consent is rape. Each individual sexual act requires consent. A victim is not responsible for the actions of an attacker. In a healthy relationship, sex is never forced. Marital rape has been a criminal act in the UK since 1991. Myth: Children are not in the same room so it does not affect them. Fact: Domestic violence and abuse affects children of all ages whether they are in the same room or not, and may lead to emotional and behavioural problems. Children are often hurt protecting their parents or siblings.

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Who can help? Swan: If you are a Swan resident (anyone living in a Swan property including tenants, leaseholders and others) who is experiencing domestic violence / abuse please contact your Neighbourhood Officer/Supported Housing Officer for help, call us on 0300 303 2500 or email info@swan.org.uk. If you would rather speak to a member of staff who is the same sex as you, please tell us. The police: Domestic violence and abuse is a crime and will be taken seriously. Your safety will be the priority. All police forces in the UK have specially trained officers who can help. In an emergency call 999. For local police contact details please see pages 9 and 10. Legal protection: Non-molestation orders and occupation orders are designed to prevent the abuser from assaulting or harassing you and can also prevent them from entering your home. It is advisable to seek legal advice before making an application.

• Non-molestation Orders: If someone is hurting or threatening you, you can ask the court to make a non-molestation order (a type of injunction) ordering them to leave you alone and they can be arrested if they fail to comply with the order. • Occupation Orders: You can ask the court to make an occupation order (a type of injunction) ordering that you can live in your home and excluding the person who is hurting or threatening you from your home and surrounding areas. • Transferring ownership or tenancy of a property: Once you have obtained an occupation order, you may be able to ask the court to transfer the ownership or tenancy of your home to your name only. You will need to seek legal advice about this (see page 9).

The National Centre for Domestic Violence (NCDV) provides a FREE, fast emergency injunction service to survivors of domestic violence regardless of their financial circumstances, race, gender or sexual orientation. Their service allows anyone to apply for an injunction within 24 hours of first contact (in most circumstances). They work in close partnership with the local police, local firms of solicitors and other support agencies (Refuge, Womens Aid etc) to help survivors obtain speedy protection. For further information and help please see www.ncdv.org.uk or contact them on Freephone 0800 970 2070.

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Other help to stay safe Emergency accommodation in your home Swan can make some security improvements to Swan properties. For further advice please contact your Neighbourhood Officer/ Supported Housing Officer for help, call us on 0300 303 2500 or email info@swan.org.uk. Sanctuary Schemes: Most local councils and local police forces work in partnership to operate sanctuary schemes, through which the security of homes is improved to make it possible for people who have experienced domestic abuse to remain in their home and feel safe. The works undertaken can range from fitting new locks to creating a panic room, from which people can call the police and wait in safety for the police to arrive. For further information please contact your local police force or local council (In most areas it will be the Domestic Violence Team, Homelessness Prevention Team or Housing Options Team who can answer queries about any local sanctuary scheme).

Swan does not have any emergency accommodation although Swan tenants can apply for a management transfer. If it is unsafe for you to remain in your home and you need somewhere to stay while you get the advice and assistance you need to either return to your home safely or find somewhere else to live, you may want to consider: • Staying temporarily with relatives or friends • Finding a women’s refuge - Call the Freephone 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247 or one of the other organisations listed later in this booklet • Finding other emergency housing - Call the free Shelter advice helpline: 0800 800 4444 • Making a homelessness application to a local council. Making a homelessness application: If you are unable to stay in your home due to violence, or threats of violence that are likely to be carried out, you can approach any council to make a homelessness application. You do not have to have a local connection to the council you approach. If you feel unsafe approaching your local council, you can apply to any council. You may be offered a placement in emergency accommodation while your case is investigated.

Leaving safely Leaving an abusive partner or family can be dangerous. They may feel like they have lost control over you and may resort to more extreme measures to regain that control. Make sure you plan your departure safely by contacting the National Domestic Violence Helpline or another domestic violence helpline/service (see pages 7 to 10). Reminder – Please see the ‘Leaving safely’ guidance on page 3.

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Useful Contacts – National There are lots of national organisations that can help people experiencing or affected by domestic violence and abuse. In an emergency call 999. National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247 (Freephone, 24 hour) www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk The Helpline is run by Women’s Aid (www.womensaid.org.uk) and Refuge (www.refuge.org.uk) for women experiencing domestic violence, their family, friends, colleagues and others calling on their behalf. Women’s refuge accommodation can be found by calling the helpline. Shelter (the housing and homelessness charity) 0808 800 4444 (Free advice helpline) www.shelter.org.uk. Shelter can provide advice and information about emergency housing. Victim Support 0808 16 89 111 www.victimsupport.org.uk. Deaf Hope 020 8775 3241 www.signhealth.org.uk/deafhope Sign-language based service for deaf women and children who are experiencing or have experienced domestic abuse. Mens Advice Line 0808 801 0327 www.mensadviceline.org.uk Advice and support for men experiencing domestic violence and abuse The Mankind National Initiative Helpline 01823 334 244/www.mankind.org.uk Support for male victims / survivors of domestic abuse, their family and friends. GALOP 0300 999 5428 www.galop.org.uk LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans) domestic violence charity Action on Elder Abuse 0808 808 8141 www.elderabuse.org.uk Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre National Helpline 0800 0288 022 www.rasasc.org Rape Crisis 0808 802 9999 www.rapecrisis.org.uk Safeline 0808 800 5005 www.safeline.org.uk Help for victims of rape or sexual abuse Survivors UK 020 3598 3898 www.survivorsuk.org Help for male victims / survivors of rape and sexual abuse, their friends and families. Citizens Advice 03444 111 444 www.citizensadvice.org.uk Page 7

Useful Contacts – National (continued) Samaritans 116 123 www.samaritans.org Childline 0800 1111 www.childline.org.uk NSPCC Helpline 0808 800 5000 www.nspcc.org.uk Other useful websites for children www.thehideout.org.uk/ www.disrespectnobody.co.uk/ www.thinkuknow.co.uk Muslim Community Helpline 020 8904 8193 or 020 8908 6715 www.muslimcommunityhelpline.org.uk Jewish Womens Aid 0808 801 0500 www.jwa.org.uk Forced Marriage Unit 020 7008 0151 www.gov.uk/stop-forced-marriage Karma Nirvana Honour Network Helpline 0800 599 9247 www.karmanirvana.org.uk Advice and support for people affected by honour based violence / abuse and forced marriage. True Honour 07480 621711 www.truehonour.org.uk Advice and support for people affected by honour based violence / abuse, forced marriage and female genital mutilation. NSPCC FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) Helpline 0800 028 3550 www.nspcc.org.uk Advice, information and support for anyone concerned that a child’s welfare is at risk because of FGM. Modern Slavery Helpline 0800 0121 700 www.modernslavery.co.uk Helpline for anyone concerned that a child or adult is a victim of slavery and help for victims of human trafficking. Drinkline 0800 917 8282 www.patient.info/support/drinkline Help for people who are worried about themselves, family or friends because of drinking Talk to Frank 0300 123 6600 www.talktofrank.com Free confidential drugs information and advice Dogs Freedom Trust 0800 298 9199 www.dogstrust.org.uk A free foster care service for dogs and cats belonging to people / families fleeing domestic violence (Available in various areas including London and Essex).

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Free legal advice National Centre for Domestic Violence 0800 970 2070 www.ncdv.org.uk Emergency injunctions and legal support (please see page 5 for more information) CLA - Civil Legal Advice 0845 345 4345 www.gov.uk/civil-legal-advice Rights of Women 020 7608 1137 www.rightsofwomen.org.uk

Advice for men seeking help to change their abusive behaviour Respect Phoneline 0808 802 4040 www.respect.uk.net Domestic Violence Intervention Project (London) 020 7633 9181 www.dvip.org Essex Change (Essex) 0845 372 2201 www.essexchange.org

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Useful Contacts – Essex In addition to the organisations listed on pages 7-8, there are lots of organisations in Essex that can help people experiencing or affected by domestic violence and abuse. They also have lots of useful information and advice on their websites. Essex Domestic Abuse Helpline 0330 3337444 www.essexcompass.org.uk Compass is a partnership of domestic abuse services and single point of access, launched 1 April 2019 and funded by Essex County Council in partnership with the Office of Essex Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner to support victims of domestic abuse across Southend, Essex and Thurrock. The SETDAB (Southend, Essex and Thurrock Domestic Abuse Board) website www.setdab.org provides lots of advice and information about domestic abuse, support for victims / survivors, support for perpetrators to change their behaviour, and information for professionals working with families affected by domestic abuse. Essex Police www.essex.police.uk In an emergency call 999. Non-emergency number: 101 (extension 180340 for Domestic Abuse Central Referral Unit (CRU)) Dedicated domestic abuse non-emergency number: 0800 358 0351.Or visit your local police station. Ask SAL (Essex Safeguarding Adults Line) 03452 66 66 63 www.essexsab.org.uk/asksal Essex Safeguarding Children Board 0345 603 7627 www.escb.co.uk Safer Places 08450 177 668 www.saferplaces.co.uk Safer Places is an independent charity that provides services (including refuge accommodation) to adults and children affected by domestic and sexual abuse in Essex. Changing Pathways 01268 729707 www.changingpathways.org Changing Pathways (formerly known as Basildon Women’s Aid) is a domestic abuse charity for women and men that works in Essex across the areas of Basildon, Brentwood, Castlepoint and Thurrock. You can also contact your local council for information, help and advice.

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Useful Contacts – London In addition to the organisations listed on pages 7-8 there are lots of organisations in London that can help people experiencing or affected by domestic violence and abuse. They also have lots of useful information and advice on their websites. London Police content.met.police.uk Every London borough has a Community Safety Unit which is made up of officers who are specially trained to help people who have experienced or are experiencing domestic violence and abuse. In an emergency call 999. Non-emergency number: 101 Hestia 020 7378 3100 info@hestia.org Hestia are the largest provider of domestic abuse refuges for women and children in London. Solace Women’s Aid 0808 802 5565 www.solacewomensaid.org Solace Women’s Aid provide help and advice for women living in London who are affected by domestic and sexual violence. They also manage a number of refuges across London including a specialist refuge for Irish Traveller women and children fleeing domestic violence. Womens and Girls Network 0808 801 0660 www.wgn.org.uk Counselling and support for women and girls who have experienced violence. Asian Women’s Resource Centre 020 8961 6549 www.asianwomencentre.org.uk Chinese Information and Advice Centre 08453 131 868 www.ciac.co.uk GALOP 020 7704 2040 www.galop.org.uk Galop is London’s LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans) anti-violence and abuse charity. East London Out Project 020 8509 3898 www.elop.org.uk Advice, information and other services for LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans) people. Albert Kennedy Trust 020 7831 6562 www.akt.org.uk The Albert Kennedy Trust supports young LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) 16-25 year olds who are made homeless or living in a hostile environment. You can also ask your local council for information, help and advice.

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SPEAKING YOUR LANGUAGE Please call us on 0300 303 2500 if you would like someone to explain this leaflet to you

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Profile for Swan Housing Association

Domestic Violence and Abuse  

Information, advice and support for Swan residents and customers experiencing domestic violence and abuse.

Domestic Violence and Abuse  

Information, advice and support for Swan residents and customers experiencing domestic violence and abuse.

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