“Is this love?” online quiz highlights the signs of domestic abuse this Valentine’s Day
“Is this love?” is the theme of a campaign being launched by Devon and Cornwall Police and domestic abuse agencies in time for Valentine’s Day. It aims to raise awareness of different aspects of domestic violence and abuse and gives people an opportunity to give their relationships a health check.
The campaign, which runs from Monday 11th – Monday 18th February 2013, is centred around an interactive quiz. created by the Devon-based domestic abuse service Stop Abuse for Everyone (SAFE), to help people learn about some of the lesser known aspects of abuse, which can be physical, emotional, psychological, financial or sexual.
Claire Brown, for SAFE, who created the quiz explained: “We wanted to create a simple and accessible resource to help people analyse their relationships with partners, friends and family members and find out whether certain behaviour could be abusive”.
“We know that people who have experienced abuse for many years, or have grown up in a violent environment, do not always consider certain behaviour as abusive, so it is crucial that we raise awareness of what is acceptable and not acceptable in a relationship – and at Valentine’s Day, a time for love and affection, this is particularly poignant”.
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The questions included in the quiz, cover some of the key signs of physical and emotional abuse and are based on a toolkit used by SAFE’s domestic abuse outreach teams in Devon.
Rachel Martin, Manager for adva, which is led by Devon County Council, said: “There are many forms of domestic abuse, from controlling behaviour over family finances, to threats and physical and sexual violence. Abuse in a relationship can happen to anyone at any time and there is help and support available to anyone who thinks they might be at risk or would like to talk to someone in confidence.”
Research carried out by Devon and Cornwall Police shows that during 2012, police responded to 26,149 domestic abuse incidents across the region.
Commenting on the latest domestic abuse statistics, Tony Hogg, Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall said: “Domestic abuse is a crime that is usually hidden inside the family circle and is often unseen. It constitutes at least 25% of all recorded crime, is frequently alcohol-related and subjects the region to millions of pounds in collateral costs. My aim is to provide an environment that encourages more reporting, and to recognise the many specialist charities and mechanisms dedicated to working together to prevent this crime.”
Detective Chief Inspector of the Public Protection Unit, from Devon and Cornwall Police, Mike West said: “Domestic Abuse is something that comes in a number of different forms and can be experienced by anyone.
“Devon & Cornwall Police and their partners are only too aware of the effect that the various forms of controlling behaviour, including physical, emotional, sexual and financial abuse can have, and that is why we’re encouraging people to recognise the signs of abuse within and outside of their own relationships in order that victims, potential victims and their families can be protected and supported by our specially trained resources.
“The quiz, which can be found on our website, via Twitter and Facebook pages, helps to identify those that may be at risk of abuse, and can provide important information and guidance regarding how the Police, their partner agencies, and friends and families can help those that are most at risk”, explained DCI Mike West.
Devon’s Domestic Abuse Partnership adva (Against Domestic Violence and Abuse) is supporting this campaign alongside Devon County Council and Devon and Cornwall Police, SAFE (Stop Abuse For Everyone), and SEEDS (Survivors Empowering and Educating Domestic Abuse Services).
Help and support is available from the Devon Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0345 155 1074 and further advice can be sought from www.adva.org.uk
Devon and Cornwall Police provide help, support and advice 24 hours a day via specially trained domestic abuse officers. In an emergency call 999 or for non –emergencies call 101; email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.devon-cornwall.pnn.police.uk for more information.
View the “Is this love?” quiz.