What is domestic abuse?
Domestic abuse is any type of controlling, bullying, threatening or violent behaviour between people in a relationship. It can seriously harm children and young people and witnessing domestic abuse is child abuse. It’s important to remember domestic abuse:
- can happen inside and outside the home
- can happen over the phone, on the internet and on social networking sites
- can happen in any relationship and can continue even after the relationship has ended
- both men and women can be abused or abusers.
Types of domestic abuse
Domestic abuse can be emotional, physical, sexual, financial or psychological, such as:
- kicking, hitting, punching or cutting
- rape (including in a relationship)
- controlling someone’s finances by withholding money or stopping someone earning
- controlling behaviour, like telling someone where they can go and what they can wear
- not letting someone leave the house
- reading emails, text messages or letters
- threatening to kill someone or harm them
- threatening to another family member or pet
Domestic abuse has a devastating impact on both the individual and society. The societal cost of domestic abuse has been estimated to cost public services (criminal justice system, health, social services, housing and civil legal services) £31.1 billion per year. The average cost of a domestic abuse case is estimated at £14,000, not inclusive of long-term costs such as unemployment, housing and social services.
In Enfield over one-third of violence reported to police is domestic abuse, with 86% of these reports being from women. Domestic abuse related offences account for 8.5% of total recorded crime within Enfield, with 30% of personal crimes identified as domestic abuse.
What to do if you are worried?
There are free, charitable organisations that can help you. Please see contact details below:
You can also contact us on 020 8379 5555 (Monday to Thursday, 9am to 5pm and Friday, 9am to 4.45pm). For out of office hours, call 020 8379 1000 (select option 2 and you will be transferred to an advisor). You can email at email@example.com.
Further support and resources
- Barnardos: Not just Collateral Damage (PDF) - looks at the hidden impact of domestic abuse on children
- Clare’s Law - gives you the right to ask the police if your partner may pose a risk to you. It also allows a member of the public to make an enquiry into the partner of a close friend or family member
If you think you or a friend are being abused, talk to someone you trust. There are services locally and nationally you can talk to for more information.