Support groups in South Tyneside meet to combat domestic abuse

Coun Moira Smith joins community safety's Scott Bentley, PC Sally College, and forum chair julie Robinson at the Domestic Violence White Ribbon Day eventl.
Coun Moira Smith joins community safety's Scott Bentley, PC Sally College, and forum chair julie Robinson at the Domestic Violence White Ribbon Day eventl.

People in South Tyneside aim to unite against domestic violence today.

The White Ribbon campaign is an international initiative calling on people to wear a white ribbon as a symbol of their pledge never to commit, condone or stay silent about domestic violence and it takes place today - to coincide with the United Nation’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

South Tyneside Council supported the campaign by hosting its annual domestic abuse conference, bringing together agencies with a key role to play in helping to tackle domestic violence and support victims.

Coun Moira Smith, lead member for area management and community safety at South Tyneside Council, said: “No one should be subjected to violence or abuse of any kind, but particularly at the hands of those they should be able to trust more than anyone. The message we want to get across is that there is help available.”

Organisations represented included South Tyneside Homes’ Welfare Support Team, the Council’s Public Health team and Young Persons’ Violence Adviser Service, Northumbria Police and Changing Lives.

Support services including Options, Places for People Women’s Refuge, Women’s Health in South Tyneside and the South Tyneside Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Programme also attended and local solicitors provided advice on legal matters including how to access Legal Aid.

Julie Robinson, Chair of South Tyneside’s Domestic Violence Forum and Manager of Options, said: “Domestic abuse can happen to anyone.

“We would also encourage people to wear their white ribbon to show that they will not condone, commit or stay silent about domestic abuse.”

Anyone affected by domestic violence can get help and support from the following organisations in South Tyneside:-

Options provides confidential and non-judgemental support to women over 16 on domestic abuse issues and can be contacted on (0191) 456 7577;

Places for People Women’s Refuge offers advice and support as well as providing safe, temporary and emergency accommodation and can be contacted on (0191) 454 8257;

South Tyneside Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Programme is for any man concerned about his behaviour towards his partner or ex-partner and wants to change and can be contacted on (0191) 455 3027.

For more information, visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/domesticviolence.