Victims and individuals affected by domestic abuse will receive extra support and more consistent help no matter where they live in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.
Led by Staffordshire’s Commissioner for Police, Fire and Rescue and Crime, the new services have been negotiated in partnership with Staffordshire County Council and Stoke-on-Trent City Council. It will mean easier access to support services for thousands of people from this Autumn.
The new approach, following 2 years of work, will mean a combined investment of £6million over 3 years for domestic abuse services by the three Authorities.
Staffordshire’s Commissioner, Matthew Ellis said: ‘It’s so important that individuals affected by domestic abuse receive support quickly when they need it, regardless of where they live.
‘The current postcode lottery of services is unfair and the last couple of years have been about ensuring from Autumn this year the right services will be delivered effectively and consistently.’
County Councillor Gill Heath, Cabinet Member for Communities said: ‘This has been a complex piece of work, and as a county council we have been working with the city council and the commissioner to ensure those who are in the most need of support can access it.
‘It is important that services for victims and their families are consistently available across the whole county, and this is an important step forward in making that happen.’
Councillor Randolph Conteh, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for housing, communities and safer city, said: ‘Individuals in the most difficult circumstances shouldn’t need to be concerned about whether a particular support service is available where they live.
‘This new approach is more consistent and balanced’.
The focus on consistent availability of good support for all has been supported by national domestic abuse victim charity, SafeLives.
New services will be available across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent and will encompass support for victims, families, communities and businesses through tiered provision including prevention and early intervention, targeted and acute support. An addition will be a similar tiered approach to perpetrator rehabilitation funded by the financial contribution from the Staffordshire Commissioner towards victim and perpetrator services.
Domestic Abuse victim services will be delivered by Victim Support. They have a wealth of experience delivering domestic abuse services and last year supported over 40,000 domestic abuse survivors across England and Wales.
Perpetrator services will be provided by Staffordshire and West Midlands Community Rehabilitation Company, who have vast experience in social rehabilitation. They endeavour to create safer communities by giving offenders the opportunity to change and the skills to rebuild their lives through tailored individual support and collaborative partnerships.
Mobilisation of new services is now underway so that the new services can be available from 1 October 2018, with collaborative work being undertaken by existing and new providers of support. Service users currently receiving support will experience a seamless transition so should have no worries or concern about the care and support they will continue to receive.