Cost of living – and impact on domestic abuse
The Domestic Abuse Commissioner (DAC) for England and Wales recently published a blog (03 November): Chancellor must put cost of living crisis and domestic abuse at the top of his agenda – lives depend on it which set out how the cost of living crisis is rapidly becoming a national emergency for domestic abuse victims.
The DAC office has found victims who lack financial means face a devastating and impossible choice – exacerbated by the cost-of-living – between leaving their abuser or staying, out of fear of not being able to pay the bills or provide for their children.
This is supported by a recent survey conducted by Women’s Aid, which found survivors said they were prevented from fleeing by the stark reality of not being able to support their children (50 per cent), getting into debt (52 per cent), or concerns that benefits wouldn’t cover increased living costs (48 per cent).
Across Norfolk many agencies are working hard to support these in financial hardship. It is important that all frontline staff keep alert to how the cost of living crisis will be increasing the risk of domestic abuse and know how to signpost on to Norfolk's specialist services.
If you or someone you know is suffering domestic abuse speak to one. There are services to help and support. The Norfolk Integrated Domestic Abuse Service (NIDAS) is for those assessed to be high or medium risk. NIDAS also offer dedicated support for children and young people (if their parent/care giver has been/or is being supported by an IDVA), recovery programmes, coordinated multi-agency support, and access to IDVA support in criminal courts for people who are at medium or high risk.
NIDAS is a countywide partnership delivered by specialist service providers – Leeway, Daisy Programme and Safe Partnership. Norfolk Integrated Domestic Abuse Service.