Yesterday our MP, Pauline Latham, told parliament that resources to domestic abuse helplines should be increased so that victims have faith that their voices will be heard.
Pauline Latham said that there is clear evidence that the number of victims is on the rise during the COVID-19 emergency but fewer people are reporting abuse.
She said that a victims’ charity has claimed that victims not being able to get through to helplines might be a contributing factor.
Our MP for Mid Derbyshire spoke via an internet link, of the need to improve support to victims during a debate on the Domestic Abuse Bill, which is currently making its way through Parliament.
She said: “Victim-support charities like Karma Nirvana, originally founded in Derby, have identified that victim reporting is decreasing, and the Government should be doing its best to better support these vulnerable groups.
“That would include reforming the Government-funded domestic abuse telephone helpline, ensuring shorter waiting times, avoiding putting callers on hold and properly directing callers to specialist helplines.
“Karma Nirvana’s own specialist helpline has bilingual call handlers who have the capacity to offer quicker, tailored support.
“The Derbyshire Domestic Abuse Support Line can be reached on 08000 198 668. If you know of people at risk of domestic violence, I would encourage you to contact them regularly through phone calls, texts or social media.”
We will have to wait to see if anything comes from her suggestion.