Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Sue Mountstevens wants victims to know that they can still #BeHeard during the Covid-19 outbreak.
Despite the need for local people to stay at home to help save lives and lessen the impact of the public health crisis on the NHS, the PCC is encouraging survivors and victims of crime to still come forward and speak out. Sue is reassuring victims – especially those in domestic abuse environments - that help is still available.
The PCC and her team at the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) are working alongside local commissioned victim services to ensure the providers can deliver advocacy, emotional and psychological support during the coronavirus pandemic. Victims can access support whether they choose to report the crime to the police or not, no matter how long ago it took place.
The PCC also wants to highlight the brilliant work of the people working in those services; the services have worked tirelessly to find innovative ways to support victims during the global health emergency. Many of the services are offering remote support via phone or web chat, and their helplines remain active.
PCC Sue Mountstevens said: “Despite these times of uncertainty, my team and I still want victims to come forward, seek help and be heard.
“We want to hear from victims of all crimes but we are particularly aware of the real risk those living in domestic abuse environments find themselves in. Those living with an abusive partner are having to be confined to their homes with the perpetrator and are even more isolated from loved ones; I cannot stress enough that help is still out there and you do not need to suffer in silence.
“My team is in regular contact with all of our commissioned services, who I know are working around the clock to find new ways of supporting local people. I want to say a massive thank you to those who work for the services who have adapted in these unprecedented times. It is more important than ever that we are working together to ensure victims are still able to get the help they so desperately need during the lockdown.”
For more information about the victim services, please visit: https://www.avonandsomerset-pcc.gov.uk/Commissioning-and-Grants/Victim-Services/Victim-Services-for-20192020.aspx
To report a crime or abuse, call the police on 999 or 101. You can report online by visiting: https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/report/
If you or someone you know is a victim of crime and you wish to report anonymously, please call CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111.
Important phone numbers:
- Adult Support Service: Victim Support - 08081 689111
- Enhanced Adult Support Service: VOCAS Swan Advocacy - 0333 447928
- Children & Young Adult Support Service: Young Victims Service - 01275 884488
- Domestic Abuse Support Service for Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire: Next Link - 01179 250680
- Domestic Abuse Support Service in Somerset: Somerset Survivors - 0800 6949999
- Independent Sexual Vioelnce Advisor Service: SafeLink - 0333 231543
- Restorative Justice: Resolve West - 01179 415379
- Sexual Assault Referral Centre: The Bridge - 01173426999
- Sexual Assault Support: SARSAS - 08088 010456
- Child Sexual Exploitation Support Service: Barnardo's
Posted on Wednesday 15th April 2020