Men's domestic abuse service to be launched
Northumberland Domestic Abuse Services (NDAS) is launching a new drop-in service for men in Berwick.
NDAS Men and Boys (16+) domestic abuse practitioner Richard Bliss will be at the temporary Berwick Library in the Swan Centre tomorrow between 10am and 4pm.
Richard said: “It used to be the case that men who were having problems in their relationships would feel they had to keep things bottled up and secret. But that’s changed. It’s important that we take our work out into the community. It helps challenge the stigma and shame that some men feel if they are experiencing or have experienced some form of domestic violence or abuse.”
The session is aimed at men, but women are also welcome to come along for initial support or advice.
NDAS supports women and men, with staff based in Berwick, Ashington and at the main office in Hexham.
The outreach service is just one of the services it provides. Support services include how to make a safety plan, information and advice about housing and the law, signposting to other services such as expert counselling or emergency refuge, emotional support, group support, advice on stalking and advice on harassment.
The launch of the outreach men’s service in Berwick follows close on the heels of new UK legislation on coercive control. The Government’s new coercive or controlling behaviour offence will mean victims who experience the type of behaviour that stops short of serious physical violence, but amounts to extreme psychological and emotional abuse, can bring their perpetrators to justice. The offence will carry a maximum of five years’ imprisonment, a fine or both.
“Men, women, old, young, gay or straight, anyone can find themselves experiencing coercive control,” said Richard. “Things like constantly being checked up on, being denied money or having to account for every penny, or constantly being put down or made to feel stupid are all examples of coercive control.”
NDAS can be contacted on 01434 608030 weekdays, or via www.nda.services