Dedicated Officers To Help Victims Of Domestic Abuse
8:35am 10th December 2013
(Updated 10:24am 10th December 2013)
Dorset Police are bringing in specially trained officers dedicated to working with domestic abuse victims over Christmas.
From Thursday officers will conduct extra reassurance visits to vulnerable adults and child victims to make sure they're safe.
Serial offenders will also be contacted to make sure they're abiding by their court orders.
Katie O'Connell works for You First which is one of the domestic support groups the police are working with.
She says, "Victims of domestic abuse struggle to report it, because they are frightened about what the consequences are and I think they need reassurance from the Police. But for all of them to know there is support from us to get them through that."
"We're not social services, we're not the Police, we're there literally to walk alongside them and give them that extra strength."
Across the county Dorset Police get at least 700 calls a month reporting domestic abuse but Katie thinks there are a lot more that aren't being reported.
"We deal with a lot of people who have never reported to the Police before, we've had over 13 hundred people referred to our service and daily we get people calling just for advice."
"We don't judge, if [a victim] wants to stay in a relationship, we tell them what they're options are... to make sure they're as safe as possible, we're not there to arrest of take people away."
You First are a team of four that cover the whole of Dorset, aside from Bournemouth and Poole, if you'd like to contact them their number is 0800 032 5204
Contact Tel Numbers:
Dorset Police (In an emergency always dial 999) 101
National Support for Victims:
National DV Helpline (24 hour) 0808 2000247
National Men’s Advice Line (for male victims) 0808 8010327
Local Support for victims
Bournemouth Outreach Service 01202 547641
Bournemouth 24 hour helpline 01202 547755
Poole Outreach Service 01202 710777
Poole 24 hour helpline 01202 748488
You First (Dorset County Outreach) 0800 0325204
West Dorset Women’s Refuge 01305 262444
Childline (for children) 0800 1111