A new campaign has been launched to highlight the need for awareness around domestic abuse, especially within workplaces. City of London Police is sending a booklet to City businesses that will help them spot the signs of domestic abuse among staff and help give employees confidence to report anything affecting them they may not be comfortable reporting to their local force.
The booklets are being issued as part of a digital toolkit, which will assist businesses create their own policies to identify domestic abuse or related issues within their workforce and educating them in how to help employees who may be suffering abuse.
Businesses can also have a member of the City of London Police Public Protection Unit (PPU) contact them about the booklet or about training within their company on the force’s dedicated webpage.
The campaign stresses that domestic abuse is a broad term used to describe a range of behaviours, not all of which are violent or even criminal, that take place within an intimate or family-type relationship. It can include sexually abusive behaviour and emotional, psychological and financial control.
Detective Inspector Anna Rice from the City of London Police PPU said: “Within the City, we may have a small residential population, but this number swells during the day due to the large workforce community.
“We recognise that workplaces may provide a safe place to report domestic abuse or to talk about issues away from home. As a police service the City of London Police is available to assist City workers, as well as residents with any matters they wish to report or to offer support.
“It can be difficult to spot the signs of domestic abuse but it can be even more difficult to step in and intervene. We hope that this booklet will provide businesses with the tools to help their employees know what to do if they think one of their colleagues are being abused.”
She said City of London Police was “dedicated to protecting from harm those that are vulnerable”, adding: “No one should live in fear of another person, and we take our responsibility to address this distressing type of behaviour very seriously.”
As part of the #spottingthesigns initiative, a video has been produced that tells the story of one woman who experienced domestic abuse and received help from City of London Police.
She hopes her story will give others the confidence that if they report domestic abuse – to police, their workplace or a friend – there are people available to help.
It demonstrates how domestic abuse can affect people within their place of work, and how important the support of managers and colleagues can be in empowering those affected to come forward and seek justice.
It also highlights the support available within the City of London.
Officers and staff offered money-saving tips
Durham Constabulary’s officers and staff are to receive help with their financial worries as part of a new campaign to increase workplace happiness.
Support, including advice on mortgages, reducing household bills and switching energy providers, will be made available to all Durham Constabulary personnel after a staff survey highlighted financial pressure as an area of significant concern.
Assistant Chief Officer Gary Ridley said making changes to insurance policies and energy supplies, for example, could generate a one per cent rise in take home pay.
The survey, which generated more than 200 responses, found that 47 per cent of officers and staff feel they are less financially secure that they were 12 months ago.
In addition, 43 per cent of those that responded said they would be less financially secure in the next 12 months compared to now.
Mr Ridley said: “About 28 per cent of staff and officers who responded said financial problems affect their ability to do their job.”
He added that help with finding better energy deals and improved car and home insurance policies is on offer to hopefully reduce household bills.
“We want to work with people to see if we can give them the equivalent of a one per cent pay rise, ie, a one per cent increase in take home pay,” said Mr Ridley.
“We have worked with a couple of people so far within the force, just at random, to see if we can and in total so far they have saved in excess of just over £1,000 a year in reduced house bills, which is the equivalent of a 2.1 per cent increase in pay to them.”
“We do think there are some practical things we can do to help.”
The Durham Constabulary survey echoes recent research by the Police Federation of England and Wales, which revealed almost nine in ten officers do not feel fairly paid given the pressures they are under.
Less than half of this year’s ‘two per cent’ pay rise will actually benefit officers’ pay packets.