The PSNI have released shocking statistics, reporting that last year they received a report of domestic violence every 17 minutes and, on Christmas day alone, there were 116 reports of domestic incidents.
These statistics may be somewhat unbelievable as the festive period is, for many families, a happy one that involves spending time with loved ones and enjoying Christmas cheer. Unfortunately the bleak reality of the statistics published by the PSNI is for a lot of families in Northern Ireland this period sees an increase in financial pressures against the backdrop of a surge in alcohol consumption, which can place additional strain on already fragile relationships.
In response, the PSNI have launched their Christmas campaign “Speak out to Stop it” encouraging victims to come forward and report incidents of domestic violence.
Domestic violence can take many forms. It’s not just about physical violence – it can also be sexual, emotional, or psychological abuse. No-one should be subjected to domestic abuse, and it is very important that victims get the help they need to break this cycle. It is not just spouses who are affected as, more often than not, children in the home are witnesses to the abuse, which can leave them severely traumatised and greatly impact their lives well in to adulthood.
Seeking advice when you have been subjected to domestic abuse can be a very difficult step. At Edwards & Co we recognise this problem and as a result are proud to have attained the Workplace Charter on Domestic Violence. We are committed to responding sensitively and effectively to those needing help and support. By displaying the ‘Safe Place’ logo in our office, victims of domestic violence can be assured of a safe and secure environment where our Solicitors can assist by discussing your options with you confidentially, and informing you of your potential choices.
Edwards & Company can offer advice on the types of Court Orders which can be sought to protect you from intimidation and harassment. The Courts have the power to exclude abusive partners from your home. At all times you and your children’s safety is considered paramount. It is important if you are a victim of domestic violence that you seek advice immediately. For more information and advice please contact Carla Fraser.