Anyone can suffer domestic abuse. Domestic abuse is not just about violence. Controlling behaviour (known as coercive control) can be just as dangerous and difficult to cope with. It’s important you take action and find support if this is happening to you or someone you know. Lockdown is making things difficult for some people and there is always help if you are suffering. Please do not wait to get help. You can report domestic abuse or controlling behaviour to South Yorkshire Police here.
How to spot the signs of domestic abuse
- Injuries – a victim may have bruising, cuts or other injuries. A victim may excuse their injuries by claiming they are clumsy or give the same explanation each time.
- Stress – a victim may display physical symptoms related to stress, other anxiety disorders or depression. They may have panic attacks, or have strong feelings of isolation and an inability to cope. In more extreme cases the victim may talk of suicide or have even made attempts.
- Absent from work – a victim may be late for or off work on a regular basis, or take time off without notice.
- Withdrawal from social activities – this will be harder to spot in the current Coronavirus situation, but this could be a sign of domestic abuse
- Personality changes – you may notice personality changes when a victim is around their partner. They may appear to ‘walk on eggshells’, or be jumpy and nervous
- Low self-esteem – a victim may express or display low self-esteem or lack of confidence regarding their relationship or life in general.
- Lack of money – a victim may never seem to have any money because their partner is withholding it from them to control them.
- A victim’s partner might display irrational behaviour – they might be jealous, aggressive or possessive. He or she may accuse them of having affairs, flirting or may read their emails, check their phone or constantly phone to check up on them.
- Unwanted pregnancy/termination – pregnancy often triggers the start of domestic abuse. This may lead a female abuse victim to be unhappy at being pregnant, not wish to continue with the pregnancy, or be forced into having a termination by her partner.
- Substance abuse – victims may use alcohol, illegal drugs, or prescribed drugs like tranquillisers or anti-depressants to cope.
- Damage to property – there may be damage to the home or even harm to the pets of victims.
Guidance on Coronavirus and those suffering domestic abuse is available here.
Details on how to contact Doncaster Women’s Aid are available here.
Information from Doncaster Council including a domestic abuse self-referral form is available here.
You can also get support and advice from:
- Domestic Abuse helpline 0808 2000 247 (24 hours a day/7 days a week) https://www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk/Contact-us There is a live chat service and online messaging service, if you don’t feel able to call
- Adult Social Services at your local council
- Your GP or other NHS health providers
- Hourglass helpline: 0808 808 8141 https://wearehourglass.org/ This organisation is dedicated to ending harm and abuse to older people
- The Police – You can call the local police on the 101 non-emergency number or call 999 immediately in an emergency. If you are unable to speak when the operator answer, tap your phone. This lets the operator know that If you’re in an abusive household and need the police but fear being heard. Dial 999. Listen to the questions from the 999 operator. Respond by coughing or tapping the handset if you can. If prompted, press 55. This lets the 999 call operator know it’s a genuine emergency and you’ll be put through to the police.
- For those aged 50 and above, you can call the Age UK Advice Line 0800 678 1174 (8am -7pm 7 days a week) https://www.ageuk.org.uk/contact-us/information-and-advice/
- The Silver Line 0800 4 70 80 90 (24 hours a day/7 days a week) confidential helpline for older people. Domestic abuse has no age limit.
If you are in danger please ring 999 immediately.
Every Mind Matters
Are you or someone you know worried about coronavirus? You or someone you know could be lonely, anxious or stressed. Here are 10 ways you can help to improve your mental health and well-being. You can find further information here
Support from Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)
For further information and advice including details of the telephone helpline, please click here
Latest updates from the NHS UK are available here.
The NHS in Doncaster and Public Health England (PHE) are well prepared for outbreaks of new infectious diseases. The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.
As per the current advice, the most important thing individuals can do to protect themselves remains washing their hands more often, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. Make sure you cough or sneeze into a tissue, put it in a bin and wash your hands.
Financial information, support and advice
The Coronavirus situation has brought financial difficulty to many people. You are not alone and there is help available from Doncaster Council here
Doncaster Citizens Advice Bureau
Accessing NHS services
If you need medical help, the NHS is still here for you.
If you need medical help from your local practice, contact them either online, by an app or by phone to be assessed.
If you need urgent medical help, use the NHS 111 online service. If you cannot get help online, call 111. If it’s a serious or life-threatening emergency, call 999.
If you are told to go to hospital it is important that you go to hospital; you also should continue to attend your appointments, unless you have been told not to attend.
End of Life Care
Information on what you can do to practically care for someone who is in their last days and hours of life is available here.
Advice and practical tips for people affected by Dementia
Living with dementia at any time brings everyday challenges for the person and the people around them. Coronavirus is making daily life much harder. During the coronavirus pandemic the Alzheimer’s Society have advice and practical tips for people living with dementia and those supporting them – either in the same household or from a distance. You may feel anxious, scared or lonely. But you are not alone – help is available. Please click here for further details
The government has now published its guidance document for the public on mental health and wellbeing throughout the Coronavirus outbreak.
In summary it has advice across 9 key areas:
- What can help your mental health and wellbeing
- Staying at home
- Where to get further support
- Additional advice for groups with specific mental health needs
- People with a learning disability
- Autistic people
- Older people
- People living with dementia
- Dealing with a mental health crisis or emergency
You can access the full document here.
Coronavirus symptom self-management
The Palliative and End of Life Care team have partnered with NHS Digital, and trusted partner organisations to host links to Coronavirus symptom self-management information, from the NHS UK website. People will be provided with expert information and advice on how Coronavirus impacts their specific palliative or long-term condition and how they should manage it during the pandemic.
As the UK’s biggest health website, with over 50 million visits every month, a large volume of people will now be directed to trusted external resources from partner organisations.
Here are some of the conditions below and this will be expanded as information becomes available.
- HIV and Aids
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Sickle cell disease
- Kidney Disease
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Motor Neurone Disease
- End of life care
- End of life care: Changes in the last hours and days
A series of posters are available and can be accessed below:
- Advice for Parents
- Household Isolation Advice Poster
- Handwashing Advice Poster
- Handwashing Advice – EasyRead Poster
- Handwashing Advice – Large Print Poster
- How to wash your hands – Portrait & Landscape Posters
- Lockdown – easy read
- Self isolation – easy read
- Safe distance poster A3 black
- Safe distance poster A3 white
- Safe distance poster A4 white
- Hot Weather Advice Leaflet from PHE 2020
- Hot Weather Poster 2020 from PHE – Beat the Heat
- PPE – Easy Read Poster
See below for a number of regularly updated Public Health England blogs on Coronavirus:
- Self-isolation: https://publichealthmatters.blog.gov.uk/2020/02/20/what-is-self-isolation-and-why-is-it-important/
- Contact tracing: https://publichealthmatters.blog.gov.uk/2020/02/13/expert-interview-what-is-contact-tracing/
- General FAQs – https://publichealthmatters.blog.gov.uk/2020/01/23/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-what-you-need-to-know/
Further information and advice relating to public health can be found on the Doncaster Council website.
And finally, please watch this video of Doncaster staff, residents and local community organisations as we fight against Coronavirus, together…