Be aware of domestic violence

August 03 2015

A NEW city-wide campaign has been launched, calling on residents to trust their gut instinct and report signs of domestic abuse.

A NEW city-wide campaign has been launched, calling on residents to trust their gut instinct and report signs of domestic abuse. 

The initiative has been launched in response to recent domestic homicide reviews which revealed that victims were not known to services, but friends and family were aware of the abuse. 

By raising awareness of the signs, and that abuse can be reported anonymously to Crimestoppers, more friends and family may feel able to speak up.

The campaign in run in partnership between Bristol City Council, Avon and Somerset Police, the Police Crime Commission, Neighbourhood Watch, Crimestoppers and other local charities and public sector organisations.

Bristol mayor George Ferguson, who is backing the campaign, said: “Earlier this year we committed to making Bristol a Zero Tolerance City for gender-based violence.

“We want to involve the whole community, ensure people know what happens if they report suspected abuse, and make sure they feel supported and able to do so.”

As part of the campaign, new help guides for friends and family have been produced and are available to download online.

Billboards will also be visible across Avon and Somerset along with posters and postcards in key locations such as leisure centres, health centres and libraries.

Police crime commissioner, Sue Mountstevens, said: “Domestic and sexual abuse is never the victim’s fault. I want any victims listening to know that they can come forward and report knowing that they will be taken seriously and will be believed.

“In many cases family and friends can offer a vital lifeline to those in distress. It’s important that if you suspect someone you know is being abused you can seek help and share your concerns.

The campaign is supported by Nick Gazzard, father of Hollie who was tragically murdered by her ex-boyfriend in 2014.

Nick set up the Hollie Gazzard Trust last year to raise awareness about the issue and leave a positive, lasting legacy for Hollie.

Help guides, support services and more information about the campaign can be found at www.thisisnotanexcuse.org. To report suspected domestic abuse anonymously, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.