Domestic abuse - here to help

The stay-at-home instruction as a result of COVID-19 does not apply if you need to leave your home to escape domestic abuse.

Domestic abuse artwork, love harts with a words written on them.

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It’s a very uncertain time for many of us, but particularly for those in lockdown with an abusive partner. This is why domestic abuse remains a priority for us during the Coronavirus outbreak.

If you’re in immediate danger call 999, or call 101 if you’d like to make a report. 

For advice, help and support WDDAS are here to help. Please call 0800 915 1561

Please note this line is open 8:30am – 5pm Monday – Thursday and 8:30am - 4:30pm Friday.


If you’re in immediate danger and need to call the police but feel as though it’s not safe for you to speak, you can use the #SilentSolution

Call 999 as usual and after you’ve heard the automated message which starts with ‘you are through to the police’ press 55

The police will then know it is not safe for you to speak, and will ask you questions which you can answer through your key pad.

West Yorkshire Police have also created a simple online form to allow you to report domestic abuse, as an alternative to speaking on the phone. The information you provide will be dealt with in the same way as any other report of domestic abuse. You can find the form here.

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:

  • Coercive control
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse 
  • Financial abuse 
  • Emotional abuse 

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
  • Pinching, biting
  • Holding, restraining, preventing you from leaving, locking you out of the home
  • Depriving you of sleep, food, medication
  • Breaking bones
  • Assaulting with a weapon such as a knife or gun, an household object
  • Burning

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:

  • Rape
  • 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:

  • Withholding money or providing you with a limited allowance
  • Stealing from you
  • Withholding physical resources such as food, clothes or necessary medications
  • Preventing you from working or keeping a job

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

Getting support

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.

Our domestic abuse leaflet is also full of helpful advice on what to do if you are in a domestic abuse situation.

Below is a list of other helpful organisations that you can contact to get help and support.

Local services

Wakefield District Domestic Abuse Service

0800 915 156

A comprehensive specialist service providing a range of advice and support for those experiencing domestic abuse. Men and women who use abusive behaviours and want to make changes can contact for information and signposting.

Rosalie Ryrie Foundation

01924 315 140

A voluntary sector service working with victims, children and perpetrators of domestic abuse. Appointments only, call to discuss options or view the website.

Well Women Centre

01924 211114

This women’s only service provides a wide range of support and advice. Counselling is available, as is a group work programme that is beneficial for women who are or have experienced domestic abuse (The Freedom Programme) a drop in service is available.

Marie House

07843 344457

Good quality local refuge accommodation for women and children who need to access safe, supported accommodation due to domestic abuse. You can call to see if bed space is available.

Penny Appeal

07480 970097

A free counselling service is offered through this charity for women who have been affected by any form of domestic abuse. Call or email to find out more.

Turning Point Talking Therapies

01924 234860 A free service for 16yrs or over who are registered with a Wakefield District G.P. Provides a range of therapeutic interventions for stress, anxiety, low self-esteem, call 01924 234860, there are bases in Wakefield and Castleford.

Kirklees Council

For those who may live on or across the border – Kirklees, Calderdale, Pennine region, Kirklees council provide a range of support including counselling, legal advice and refuge accommodation. The comprehensive website will signpost you effectively to the most appropriate number.

Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC)

0330 2233617

The Police website gives comprehensive information about sexual assault and where to get help, for West Yorkshire call 0330 2233617 for the local SARC.


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.

Children First Hubs

There are a number of bases across the district which offer early help to children and families. The support includes interventions around domestic abuse – The Freedom Programme is available for those women who are or have experienced domestic abuse.

Please note this is not an exhaustive list – for further information contact Anna

National services


0808 2000 24

this service runs the National Domestic Violence Helpline – the 24/7 advice line can help you find refuge space, and provides information and support. The website is comprehensive and available in different community languages, Refuge provides a number of culturally specific services.

Women’s Aid Federation England

Provides frontline services across the country including refuge. An online chat service is provided Mon-Fri 10am-12pm and there is a moderated survivors forum available.

The Hideout is designed for children who may be experiencing or worried about domestic abuse. The website is a good source of information and support

Mankind Initiative

0182 333 4244 Weekdays 10 - 4pm

Confidential helpline for men who are experiencing domestic violence and abuse from female or male partners - the website provides good support and information.

Men's Advice Line

0808 801 0327

Provided by Respect. Weekdays 9-5pm with lines open until 8pm on Mondays and Wednesdays for all male victims of abuse. A comprehensive website for victims and professionals also enables e-mail contact and webchat with the service.

Karma Nirvana

0800 5999 247

Weekdays 9 - 5pm. This helpline is for all victims and survivors of forced marriage and ‘honour’ based abuse. The website is a good source of information for professionals and those seeking support


0800 999 5428

This national helpline is for people identifying as LGBT+ who are experiencing domestic abuse. The website is very comprehensive, the opening times of the helpline are varied but are listed on the site and webchat is available.

National Centre for Domestic Violence

0800 970 2070

The service provides a free, emergency injunction service to help protect survivors of abuse. Professionals are also able to access this service for advice or to support a client.

National Stalking Helpline

0808 8020 300

The advice line is available for anyone who is, or has been affected by stalking or harassment. The website is comprehensive and user friendly. Helpline 9.30 - 4pm, weekdays, 1pm – 4pm Wednesdays.

Victim Support

0300 303 1971 (West Yorkshire)

0808 1689 111 (National support line)

Open 24/7 every day of the year. You do not have to be referred by the Police or have a crime number; domestic abuse victims can call the helpline or use the website for support and information.

FGM Helpline NCPCC

0800 028 3550

This is available 24/7 It is confidential for anyone affected by or worried about Female Genital Mutilation.


0808 802 40 40

Weekdays 9-5pm. The helpline is for anyone who wants to make changes to their abusive behaviour. The website offers a great deal of information and support, and contact can be made by phone, e-mail and by webchat on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.


Free online support for children and young people, online counselling, supported forums and advice, staffed weekdays 12-10pm Sat/Sun 6-10pm

Please note this is not an exhaustive list – for further information contact

Hurts them too

Some of the biggest victims of the domestic abuse are the smallest   

Every year thousands of children are exposed to domestic abuse in the home, and it's a possibility that this can have a powerful impact on their lives and hopes for the future. 

Every child has the right to grow up safe from harm, and should feel that those they love are also protected. 

Wakefield Domestic Abuse Service can help! Contact us at 0800 915 1561


Operation Encompass

Operation Encompass, school girl with head in hands 

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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Contact us

Domestic abuse
0800 915 1561