With cases of domestic abuse across the UK predicted to spike as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, people in Sandwell are being reminded of the help and support which is available locally.
The government has asked people to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives, but for some domestic abuse means home may not feel a safe place – and there are support services in Sandwell to help.
Anyone experiencing domestic abuse, or who knows someone who is, can call Black Country Women’s Aid on 0121 552 6448 (24-hour line) or email email@example.com (messages responded to 9am-5pm Monday-Friday excluding bank holidays).
You can also now text or WhatsApp Black Country Women’s Aid on 07384 466 181 – messages are checked 9am-9pm Monday-Friday except bank holidays (messages received at other times will be responded to within these hours).
Black Country Women’s Aid provides support to both women and men. www.respectphoneline.org.uk
Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123.
Domestic abuse should be reported to the police using their website www.west-midlands.police.uk
It’s easy to use and could be safer than calling. Anyone can webchat police staff via the website for help and advice without having to talk to someone on the phone. In an emergency, always call 999.
Respect offers a phone and webchat service for those who are worried about their own behaviour and looking for support to manage their behaviour – visit or call 0808 8024040.
Details of more support services can be found at www.sandwell.gov.uk/domesticabuse
Other agencies that can help:
* National Domestic Violence helpline for women – 0808 2000 247 – www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk/contact-us
* West Midlands Forced Marriage and Honour-Based Violence helpline – 0800 953 9777
* National Domestic Violence helpline for men – 0808 8010 327 – www.mensadviceline.org.uk
* Victim Support – 0300 303 1977 – www.victimsupport.org/westmidlands
* Rape Crisis England and Wales – 0808 802 9999 – www.rapecrisis.org.uk
* National LGBT+ domestic abuse helpline – 0800 999 5428