For many survivors of domestic abuse, home isn’t a safe place. Current isolation measures to prevent the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) will therefore leave many survivors feeling more alone and at risk with fewer opportunities to seek help. Lambeth are working hard to let survivors know they are not alone.
Pattern of behaviour
Domestic abuse isn’t just physical violence. It’s a pattern of behaviours used to control a current/ex-partner or family member and can include emotional, psychological, financial and sexual abuse.
The Gaia Centre is Lambeth’s commissioned domestic and sexual violence service. Specialist workers provide confidential, emotional and practical support to any survivor living in Lambeth. They can help with alternative housing options, legal advice, reporting to police and by creating a tailored individual support plan. Their young people’s service supports children aged 11-17 affected by gender-based violence.
The Gaia Centre is operating remotely during isolation, providing support via email, phone and text – whatever is safest. Gaia workers have quickly adapted to constantly finding new ways to continue their life saving work during this difficult time.
Lambeth Council fully support this crucial work and have provided additional funding for remote working laptops for all workers. Lambeth are getting the word out to residents with support from Lambeth Business Improvement District (BIDs), Safer Lambeth Business Partnership, the Brixton Bugle, Lambeth pharmacies and local Councillors. Lambeth urge friends, family, neighbours, practitioners and colleagues to be extra vigilant during this time and to check in with loved ones. For advice on how to do this safely and a range of useful tips and support options see the Violence Against Women and Girls pages.
- To contact the Gaia Centre call: 020 7733 8724 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Follow the GAIA centre of Facebook and Twitter
- Stress caused by Coronavirus is no excuse for domestic abuse – abusing a partner, ex-partner or family member is always a choice. For help to change abusive behaviour call the Respect Phoneline: 0808 802 4040.
- If you are concerned for your own or someone else’s immediate safety, always call police on 999.
- For free 24/7 advice for yourself or someone else, regardless of where you live, call the Freephone 24h National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247.