New domestic violence campaign launched

Gazette: Cabinet member Dick Madden and Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh Cabinet member Dick Madden and Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh

VICTIMS of domestic violence have designed a new campaign to combat the epidemic in Essex.

80 emergency calls are received every day in the county with 28,000 reported incidents in 2013.

Yesterday Essex Police launched a new scheme, with the support of every council.

It is called “Standing Together” with residents urged to tweet pictures of their feet to show they won’t ignore and will support victims.

Dick Madden, cabinet member for children and families at Essex County Council, said: “This campaign aims to raise awareness of a subject often seen as a taboo.

“We want to get people talking.

“We are encouraging the whole community to get involved and stand with us.”

Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh, at the launch yesterday, said: “This is a completely new approach.

“We have listened to men and women who have survived an abusive relationship.

“This campaign is about empowerment, showing there is life after domestic abuse.

“This campaign gives everyone the chance to stand together against domestic abuse and say it is wrong.”

He revealed just this weekend there were serious attacks against women and two reported from same sex relationships.

He said: “Health professionals need to recognise what is happening and open up.

“This campaign includes real messages from real survivors.

“We recognise the history of this county and recognise the issue.

“We are desperately trying to do things differently and a lot of progress has been made.

Essex Police was heavily criticised following the deaths of Chistine and Shania Chambers, Maria Stubbings and Jeanette Goodwin who were all killed by violent partners.

In the past two years several changes have been made to improve the treatment and care provided to victims.

Those running the campaign emphasised the different sorts of help available from support to those who want to maintain a relationship but need help to those who want a new start.

To find out more visit www.essex.police.uk/standingtogether

To show your support tweet a picture of your feet with #tweetyourfeet and #notodomesticabuse

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