Alex Atkinson, head of service for Safenet; CC Alan Cullens, lead member for community and cultural services for LCC; Helene Cooper, policy, information and commissioning manager for LCC; County Councillor Peter Buckley, cabinet member for community and cultural services for LCC.

Domestic abuse services Launched

An event to showcase the domestic abuse services commissioned by Lancashire County Council has been held.

The Partnership Launch and Celebration Event, held at the Gujarat Centre in Preston, brought local organisations together to promote the new services, which have been introduced to ensure that residents of Lancashire have access to a comprehensive range of services that can support individuals and families experiencing domestic abuse.

These services include providing different types of safe accommodation, including sanctuary schemes, which allow survivors to continue to live safely in their own home. The county council is also continuing its funding for refuges, which support people in crisis situations.

Other specialised services include:

  • early intervention work to prevent domestic abuse escalating, such as the Parachute Programme, which offers support to 14- to 19-year-olds who are displaying abusive behaviour in relationships
  • the Safe at Home Outreach Scheme, which is for victims who do not want to access accommodation. It allows people to meet support workers in the community at places such as cafes or outdoors to get the support they need
  • the Lancashire Perpetrator Programme, to address the behaviour of adult men who abuse their female partners

The event was opened by County Councillor Peter Buckley, cabinet member for community and cultural services.

County Councillor Buckley said: "The county council has commissioned these new services, investing more than £4m as part of its statutory duties under the domestic abuse act.

"The services complement existing support, such as refuges, which are still hugely important, but we can now offer more targeted support at an early stage to help stop abuse from escalating.

"The event is part of our plans to work together to ensure we can make the best use of these new services to protect vulnerable people across our county.

"More domestic abuse support services are set to be introduced over the next few months."

Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, director of public health, Lancashire County Council, added: "This event brought together representatives from many different organisations, and we were pleased with the great level of participation.

"It's vital that we can now target specific groups where abuse may be an issue and offer a much greater range of support to either prevent it or ensure it doesn't escalate.

"Domestic abuse has a significant impact on health, and especially mental health, so we'll continue to do all we can to work together with our partners to prevent it."

For more information about domestic abuse and where to get help, visit the county council's Domestic Abuse webpage.