04 February 2009>
The statistics are truly shocking: 1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse at some point during their lives. 39% of domestic abuse incidents involve alcohol, and on average, two women die each week as a result of domestic abuse.
Unfortunately, statistics suggest that incidences of domestic abuse tend to peak at times of the year when triggering factors for abuse (such as an increase in alcohol consumption) increase, typically during large sporting tournaments.
The Safer Caerphilly Community Safety Partnership and its partners are committed to tackling problems linked to domestic abuse during the forthcoming Six Nations tournament.
One of the partners, Gwent Police are working with the Welsh Rugby Union to highlight the issue of domestic abuse and encourage victims to find the courage to break their silence and seek help. In previous years, additional specially trained police officers also have been on patrol during the tournament, to respond quickly to domestic abuse cases.
In addition, Caerphilly County Borough Council's Community Safety Wardens will be playing an active role in helping to tackle domestic abuse during the Six Nations tournament – they will be conducting additional patrols in areas where domestic abuse victims are known to live in order to discreetly provide reassurance to victims. Should the need arise, the Community Safety Wardens will be able to call on colleagues from Gwent Police to attend and enforce the law where necessary.
The Safer Caerphilly Multi Agency Centre (MAC), which is a one-stop-shop for victims of domestic abuse and their families, will also be available to offer help and support to victims of domestic abuse. The centre provides professional support from a range of agencies, all under one roof.
The MAC is this month celebrating its two-year anniversary of opening – since it's opening in February 2007, the centre has helped over 200 local people escape domestic abuse.
The key partners involved in the operation of the MAC include the Safer Caerphilly Community Safety Partnership's statutory bodies including Caerphilly County Borough Council, Gwent Police and Caerphilly teaching Local Health Board, as well as Gwent Healthcare Trust, Caerphilly Women's Aid, BAWSO, Victim Support and Gwent Alcohol Project (GAP).
Cabinet member for the environment, Cllr Lyn Ackerman said, "I really cannot stress enough how much of a positive difference the Safer Caerphilly MAC has made to victims of domestic abuse and their families. I would urge anyone who is reading this and who is suffering domestic abuse to seek help – there are people that can help you and your family – please do not suffer in silence."
If you or someone you know is affected by domestic abuse please call the All Wales Domestic Abuse 24 hour freephone helpline on 0808 8010 800 or the Safer Caerphilly MAC on 01443 819 317 (during office hours).
In an emergency, dial 999.
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