Domestic abuse - here to help
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What is domestic abuse?
Domestic abuse is any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. Domestic abuse isn’t just about violence; it can involve many different types of behaviour such as:
Domestic abuse isn’t sweet, and sadly it occurs in Wakefield. It may make you feel trapped, controlled, hopeless, scared or worried.
Different Types of abuse
Controlling behaviour is a range of acts that is designed to exploit, intimidate and manipulate someone for selfish reasons. This involved depriving them of their independence in an effort to show domination.
Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish, or frighten their victim. Coercive control also includes so called 'honour' based violence, female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage.
This list can help you to recognise if you, or someone you know, are in an abusive relationship.
Physical abuse may include:
Pushing, throwing, kicking
Slapping, grabbing, hitting, punching, beating, tripping, battering, bruising, choking, shaking
Holding, restraining, preventing you from leaving, locking you out of the home
Depriving you of sleep, food, medication
Assaulting with a weapon such as a knife or gun, an household object
Emotional abuse may include:
Threatening or intimidating you to gain compliance
Destruction of your personal property and possessions, or threats to do so
Yelling or screaming, name calling, constant harassment
Embarrassing, making fun of you, either at home or in public
Saying you are worthless, excessive possessiveness, isolates you from friends and family
Blaming you for how they act or feel
Making you feel there is no way out of the relationship
Sexual abuse may include:
- Sexual assault - forcing someone to participate in unwanted, unsafe, or degrading sexual activity
- Controlling access to contraception
- Not allowing you to express you sexuality or ridiculing your preferences
- Sexual exploitation (such as forcing someone to look at pornography, or forcing someone to participate in pornographic film-making)
- Using force, threats or intimidation to make you perform sexual acts
Economic or financial abuse may include:
Controlling behaviour may include:
- Telling you what to wear, where you can go and who you can see
- Going everywhere with you
- Telling you when to eat, sleep, shower
- Timing you, forcing you to account for your time
- Monitoring you on social media, controlling your use of technology
Coercive behaviour includes:
Making you drop charges
- Threatening to hurt you or someone you love
- Intimidating you until you comply
- Doing something to frighten you so you end up doing something you don't want to
Everyone has the right to live a life free from fear, without violence, intimidation or controlling behaviour.
Support is available for people who are experiencing abuse, and also for those who recognise that they are using abusive behaviours and want to make changes
You can contact Wakefield District Domestic Abuse Service on 0800 915 1561.
domestic abuse leaflet is also full of helpful advice on what to do if you are in a domestic abuse situation.
During the Coronavirus outbreak, there are three contact numbers you can call for support
- 0800 915 1561
Please note these lines are open:
8:30am – 5pm Monday – Thursday
8:30am – 4:30pm Friday
Below is a list of other helpful organisations that you can contact to get help and support.
Wakefield District Domestic Abuse Service
0800 915 156
01924 315 140
A voluntary sector service working with victims, children and perpetrators of domestic abuse.
A women's only service that provides a wide range of support and advice including counselling and group support.
Good quality local refuge accommodation for women and children who need to access safe, supported accommodation due to domestic abuse.
Support from Kirklees Council for Kirklees residents including counselling, legal advice and refuge accommodation.
0800 0527 222
Support services for those experiencing domestic abuse in the Pennine region. Kirklees Asian and Black Women's Welfare Association (KABWA) are also available on the same number.
A police website giving information about sexual assault and where to get help in West Yorkshire.
A free counselling service is offered through this charity for women who have been affected by any form of domestic abuse. Call or email
firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
A free service for people aged 18 or over who are registered with a Wakefield District GP. They provide a range of therapeutic interventions for stress, anxiety, low self-esteem and similar.
116 123 (free phone)
01924 377011 (Local base in Wakefield)
You can call the Samaritans about any issue, at any time, every day of the year – someone will listen and talk to you.
These two key charities work together to provide the 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline
0808 2000 247
Both charities provide refuge accommodation throughout the country for women and children who may need to flee their homes due to domestic abuse.
The Women's Aid's children's section is
0182 333 4244
A confidential helpline for men who are experiencing domestic violence and abuse from female or male partners - the website provides support and information.
0808 801 0327
A helpline for male victims of domestic abuse including forced marriage.
0800 5999 247
A helpline for all victims and survivors of forced marriage and 'honour' based abuse.
0800 999 5428
A helpline for people identifying as LGBT+ who are experiencing domestic abuse.
0800 970 2070 or text 60777 for a call back
Free, legal support to help protect survivors of abuse.
0800 195 8699
Injunctions and court orders for domestic abuse victims.
0808 8020 300
Advice for anyone affected by stalking or harassment.
0300 303 1971 (West Yorkshire)
0808 1689 111 (National support line)
Support and information for domestic abuse victims; you don't have to be referred by the police or have a crime number.
0800 028 3550 (FGM helpline)
Confidential support for anyone affected by or worried about Female Genital Mutilation.
0808 802 40 40
The helpline is for anyone who wants to make changes to their abusive behaviour.
Free online support for children and young people, online counselling, supported forums and advice.
Please note this is not an exhaustive list – for further information contact
What is Operation Encompass?
Operation Encompass is an initiative to support children and young people in school following a domestic abuse incident the previous day.
The purpose of Operation Encompass is to safeguard and support those children and young people who have witnessed or been present at the time of a domestic abuse incident. Operation Encompass aims to ensure that appropriate school staff are made aware at the earliest possible stage in order to provide relevant and tailored support to children and young people immediately following the incident to help ‘make the next day better’.
How does it work?
A report is made to schools before the start of the next school day when a child or young person has witnessed or been present at a domestic abuse incident the previous day and police are called.
The information is given in strict confidence to a Key Adult in school who would then be able to accommodate the school day to lessen the impact of the incident and to support the child if they need it.
Operation Encompass in Wakefield
A £25,000 grant from Wakefield’s Community Safety Partnership (CSP) has paid for a worker to deliver Operation Encompass in the district.
By January 2019, Operation Encompass will be in 144 schools in the Wakefield area.
For more information, visit the
Operation Encompass website.
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