Tackling domestic abuse in Oxfordshire
Residents of all ages, genders and backgrounds who may have concerns about domestic abuse are being advised of the support available from organisations to help both nationally and locally.
To mark the start of the national campaign ‘16 Days of Action’, Oxfordshire County Council is looking to raise awareness of the signs of domestic abuse and support available to people on both a national and local level.
Councillor Mark Lygo, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, said: “Anyone could be a victim of domestic abuse – whatever age, background or gender. We all need to be aware of the signs of abuse and know where to get help if we are concerned about someone.
“Domestic abuse can be much more than just physical violence. It can also include coercive control, financially controlling someone, emotional manipulation and abuse, and sexual abuse. It can also include forcing someone into a marriage against their will and female genital mutilation. However, there is help available. If you are worried about yourself or a friend in relation to domestic abuse, you can contact the Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Service for support. “
Domestic abuse can affect everyone regardless of their gender, sexuality or ethnic background. The majority of victim survivors of domestic abuse are women and girls, but men and boys can be survivors of domestic abuse. 74% of victims of all domestic abuse related recorded crimes were women, compared to 26% of men.
Similarly, people from mixed or multiple ethnic backgrounds were also the most likely to experience domestic abuse at 7.6 per cent - or about one in every 14.
Data also shows that people with disabilities are more at risk than those non-disabled people. Forms of abuse could include withholding care, being neglectful or abusive in duties, or controlling benefit payments relating to the disability. There may also be a physical dependency on the abuser, making it more difficult to access help.
How to access support
There is support available locally for everyone who needs it.
Anyone in immediate danger should phone 999. Those in danger but unable to talk on the phone should dial 999 and press 55. Doing this will transfer the call to the police, who can assist callers without having to speak.
Those who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing can register with emergency SMS by texting ‘register’ to 999.
Oxfordshire domestic abuse services, provided by A2Dominion, offers free services to anybody experiencing domestic abuse (including ‘honour-based abuse’), regardless of sexuality, ethnicity and immigration status. The Oxfordshire domestic abuse helpline is open and available. For help and support, call 0800 731 0055 (Mon - Fri 10am - 7pm), or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, the National Domestic Abuse Helpline is open 24 hours to offer support 0808 2000 247.
Further advice and information is available on Oxfordshire County Council’s website.
Oxfordshire All In also has a range of online information regarding domestic abuse and support available at oxfordshireallin.org/domestic-abuse.
There are also national services and helplines for different groups to seek help:
- Women’s Aid provides help, support and advice across the country for women and their children. More information about the support it offers can be found online at womensaid.org.uk/domestic-abuse-directory.
- Galop is a charity offering advice and support to those in the LGBTQ+ community. Learn more about its work and the support available at galop.org.uk.
- Respect men’s advice line is for men who are victims of domestic abuse and need help. Learn more about how to seek help and support on its website at mensadviceline.org.uk.
- Anybody worried about harming the ones they love can access support and help to manage their behaviours through the Respect phoneline on 0808 8024040.