Release Date: 15-Dec-2014
We've teamed up with Kirklees Council and partners including Pennine Domestic Violence Group, West Yorkshire Police, NHS, Probation Services, Locala, Lifeline/On Trak, Community Partnerships, Kirklees College, Huddersfield of University and voluntary and community organisations to raise awareness and educate young people aged 16-24 about domestic abuse.
Launching on 15 December and running over the festive period, the campaign message “It’s never ok”, aims to highlight that domestic abuse effects people from all communities, genders and people in same sex relationships. The campaign highlights different forms of abuse including violence, emotional, control and forced marriage. Film clips have been produced to show just how quickly issues can escalate.
Emotional control - it's never ok
Cllr Viv Kendrick, Cabinet Member for Health, Wellbeing and Communities said: “This is a great example of multi-agency working – it demonstrates what can be achieved when organisations work together on important issues such as domestic abuse. We know that incidents of domestic abuse increase over the festive season and we are urging victims of domestic abuse to seek support.”
“As most people look forward to the Christmas and New Year, relationships can hit problems during this time. Heavier drinking, money worries and unrealistic expectations can contribute to a seasonal rise in domestic violence related crimes and incidents. The police, the council’s domestic violence support team and Pennine Domestic Violence Group receives more calls in January than at any other time of year once the festivities are over. Victims need to know that abuse is not their fault and they do not have to put up with it. We urge victims to report incidents to enable the right support to be offered for victims and their children.”
Assistant Chief Constable, Russ Foster of West Yorkshire Police, said: "The Christmas season is a time when levels of offending rise and West Yorkshire Police will be working hard with partners such as Kirklees Council, to protect victims and take action against suspects”.
"Police will be pursuing all available methods to bring those who abuse their partners to justice including victimless prosecutions and the deployment of officers with body cameras to all domestic abuse incidents to make sure all evidence is captured”.
"I would urge anyone who is subject to domestic abuse to make contact with us directly or alternatively through other partners or third sector agencies to ensure that you receive the necessary support and advice to break the cycle of abuse”.
Rebecca Hirst, Pennine Domestic Violence Group, said: “Being subjected to domestic violence and abuse destroys self-confidence and leaves victims feeling lonely and isolated and highly likely to suffer from depression or anxiety, self-harm and sleep problems”.
“This multi-agency campaign is very timely – our calls increased 25% in January, February and March 2014, compared to the previous three months, October to December 2013”.
“It will encourage young people to re-think their views of what a respectful relationship is and any violent, abusive, controlling and jealous behaviour”.
In addition to online promotion the campaign features some high profile outdoor advertising including adverts in bus and train stations on buses and in pubs and clubs across Kirklees. The message throughout the campaign is ‘it’s never OK’ and anyone who identifies themselves as being in a similar relationship is urged to seek our help and support. www.kirklees.gov.uk/itsneverok
Glenda Smith from the University of Huddersfield said: “This multi-agency approach aims to educate and raise awareness to young people about the warning signs of domestic abuse, in order to avoid the risks in their own relationships.”
“As well as protecting our young people, we also recognise that we have a vital part to play in ensuring cycles of abuse do not continue in future generations”.
“I encourage everyone to get behind this campaign and share the message that ‘It’s never ok’ as far and wide as possible”.