The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) has secured additional funding for three Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVAs) and three Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs) to further support victims across Avon and Somerset.
Following a successful bidding process working with Local Authority partners, the OPCC will receive an additional £706,608 over a three year period from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), which will then be awarded to Safe Link to employ three ISVAs and Next Link to employ three IDVAs.
This follows existing funding by the OPCC from the MoJ, meaning that across Avon and Somerset, there are now an additional 26 IDVAs and 12 ISVAs supporting individuals with lived experiences of domestic and sexual abuse.
The newly appointed ISVAs and IDVAs will have a particular focus on supporting those with protected characteristics specifically children and young people.
The three ISVAs will work forcewide and continue to support individuals with lived experiences of sexual violence, where caseloads continue to be particularly high. The three IDVAs will work across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire where gaps around domestic violence support for children and young people have been identified. All of the posts will provide emotional and practical support for victims.
“A massive well done to our Commissioning and Partnership Team, partners and providers for another successful bid to the MoJ; additional funding and new IDVA and ISVA positions will make a big difference to the services available across Avon and Somerset.
“The additional funding will provide greater capacity for local people, particularly children and young people, accessing these services and ensure help is there when needed. It is important that those with lived experiences have confidence to access the support they deserve.
“The investment also allows us to continue to work towards the delivery of my Police and Crime Plan priorities, specifically tackling male violence against women and girls and supporting victims of crime.”PCC Mark Shelford
The OPCC’s successful bid follows announcements in the 2021 Budget that Government would be increasing the number of ISVAs and IDVAs funded nationally by the MoJ to over 1000 by 2024/25.
Domestic abuse can be abusive physical, emotional, psychological, financial or sexual behaviour between adults in a relationship or between family members.
If you or someone you know is at risk of domestic abuse or sexual violence, please speak to someone:
- on the phone – call the police on 101 or 999 in an emergency
- in person – at a police station
- online – fill in the report a crime or incident form
Support for victims and survivors
Help is available whether you report to the police or not, and no matter how long ago the crime took place. Find out more about local support services.