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PSNI provide reassurance to domestic abuse victims in lockdown

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Asst Chief Constable Mark McEwan

Asst Chief Constable Mark McEwan

Asst Chief Constable Mark McEwan

Victims of domestic abuse are being assured that help remains available during the coronavirus pandemic.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark McEwan from the PSNI's Community Safety Department said he wanted to reassure victims.

He said: "Domestic abuse is a crime and, until victims are aware there is a safe environment to share their concerns, they will continue to hold on to the secret of domestic abuse.

"For victims, we know they may now find it harder to leave their homes, but I want you to know help is out there in many forms, and every step of the way, so please come forward and report what is happening to us or through the other services available. Please remember, we are here to listen and to work with our partners to protect and help you."

Sarah Mason, chief executive of Women's Aid Federation Northern Ireland, said the charity was still providing support.

She added: "Families are in our refuges at this critical time and outreach support is available via multi-communication formats."

Rhonda Lusty from Men's Advisory Project (MAP) said: "We want to reassure you that the Men's Advisory Project is here for you. We are here to help you make sense of what is going on - to give you space to make decisions which will help you feel better and that will lead to a safer and happier life again."

Aisling Twomey from The Rainbow Project said: "It's important for LGBT people of all ages to be aware of the support available to them whether they are experiencing abuse from a partner, family members or anyone else."

Contact police via the non-emergency 101 number or call '999' in an emergency. The Silent Solutions Service enables a 999 caller who is too scared to make a noise, or speak, to press 55 when prompted. A 24-hour Domestic and Sexual Abuse Helpline is available on 0808 802 1414

Belfast Telegraph