One 24-hour period this week saw a 30% increase in domestic abuse cases being reported to Lincolnshire Police.
However, the police stressed there has been no overall increase in domestic abuse cases since going into lockdown in March following the outbreak of Covid-19.
Police spokesman Jemma Peacock said: “It’s not unusual to see fluctuations like this as they are relatively small numbers and affected by all sorts of things from sporting events to the weather – so we tend to concentrate on the overall picture, not a blip.”
With more people being locked in with their abusers during this pandemic, Lincolnshire Police SP has assured the public that domestic abuse remains a priority for its officers.
Normal isolation rules do not apply in these circumstances as abusers will be removed from the premises or refuge will be provided for victims.
“No one should feel alone – now, more than ever, we need to look out for each other,” said Ms Peacock.
As many will be unable to turn to their family and friends during this time, here is a list of five steps to take if you are suffering from domestic abuse at home.
1. In an emergency call 999 and use Silent Solutions if necessary.
If you are in immediate danger call 999. However, the operators realise that in these situations you may not be able to talk freely.
In this case, BT operators will transfer your call to Silent Solutions where after a 20 second message you will be asked to press 55. A police call handler will then ask you a series of “yes” or “no” questions that will determine the situation and reduce putting the caller in harm’s way.
2. Make a safety plan
Women’s Aid have useful information regarding making a safety plan which can help protect you and your children from further abuse. This includes planning ahead, keeping a small amount of money on you at all times and having a bag packed with essentials in case you have to flee quickly.
It may also help in identifying a pattern to the abuse and allow you to remove yourself to the other side of the house to try and remain safe before a situation escalates.
3. Lincolnshire helplines and charities available
Covid-19 has shut down opportunities for face-to-face support but many organisations can still be reached online or via telephone for support.
EDAN Lincs (Ending Domestic Abuse Now): 01522 510041 or visit EDAN Lincs.
Lincolnshire Rape Crisis: 0800 3345500 or visit Lincolnshire Rape Crisis.
East Lindsey Domestic Abuse Service (ELDAS): 01507 609830 or visit their website
National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000247 or visit the National Helpline website.
Men’s Advice Line: 0808 8010327 or visit their website.
Lincolnshire County Council: 01522 782155 for adult social care or 01522 782111 if concerning children.
All these helplines provide emotional support for those suffering abuse at home and can help in providing urgent accommodation as well as other vital services.
4. Help for the perpetrator
The Respect Helpline provides help to the perpetrator of domestic abuse to help change behaviour.
If you fear you may harm those in your house visit their website or call 0808 8024040.
5. Use the NHS website to treat ailments at home if unable to leave
If you are unable visit A&E for any physical injuries sustained while at home you can visit the NHS website for tips on how to treat yourself to reduce risk of further complications. Or call 111.