During the World Cup, police and charities are working to stop domestic violence
As the nation prepares for England’s quarter final against Sweden on Saturday, police and a number of charities are working to spread the message that domestic violence is not acceptable following the game (or indeed ever). These preperations come in response to research showing domestic abuse rates can increase significantly when England loses a match.
Police have launched Give Domestic Violence the Red Card to highlight the issue during the World Cup, using the hashtag #NoExcuse to demonstrate the severity of this crime in the eyes of the law. This campaign has been followed by messages that any instances of domestic violence will be dealt with robustly.
The only stats that really matter this #WorldCup18 is the shocking ⬆️ in #domesticviolence during England’s World Cup matches!— Robert Lingard (@RobertLingard) June 24, 2018
There’s #NoExcuse and if you’re experiencing #domesticabuse or know someone who needs help and support, then visit: https://t.co/56UG04e64T pic.twitter.com/vUN58tUDOt
The Pathway Project, a charity who focus upon action against domestic abuse have added their support to this, rolling out a social media campaign which highlights the potential impact the football tournament can have on victims of domestic violence.
Refuge, a charity supporting women and children who are victims of domestic violence, works with Women's Aid and the National Domestic Violence Helpline and continues to provide a free 24 hour support line for those experiencing domestic abuse at any time.
While Refuge are supportive of all measures to prevent and reduce domestic violence, CEO Sandra Horley CBE is keen to point out that domestic violence is a year-round issue.
Sandra said "We know that some police forces see an increase in reports of domestic violence during major football competitions. Football – and the alcohol that tends to go with it – can be aggravating factors when it comes to domestic violence, but they are not the root cause.
"Domestic violence is systematic, patterned behaviour on the part of the abusive man designed to control ‘his woman’. Blaming football or alcohol absolves the perpetrator of responsibility for his actions. Domestic violence is a choice perpetrators make; and the vast majority of men who enjoy football do not choose to abuse their partners."
Whatever the result of this weekend's game, we hope that the ongoing work around preventing domestic abuse will significantly reduce incidents and provide support to those who need it.
To read more about counselling and domestic violence visit Counselling Directory or contact National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247 (24 Hours and Free) for advice, help and support.