Solace Statement: If You are Suffering Domestic Abuse- Tier 4 Rules do not apply to you

Since London was placed under Tier 4 lockdown restrictions, frontline Solace staff are reporting an increase in the numbers of women seeking support from our services.

Throughout 2020, and particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdowns, Solace has seen an increase in the numbers of women fleeing domestic abuse and an increase in the complexity of their needs. For some women this means they have additional mental health needs after being trapped at home with a perpetrator during lockdown.

Not being able to leave home and seek the support of family and friends or other support groups is deepening trauma and the impact of abuse for many women and their children.

For women and children living with abuse, home is not a safe place and for many lockdown never ends.

“It is vital that women trying to flee domestic abuse before the Tier 4 lockdown who now find themselves trapped within abusive homes know that lockdown rules do not apply to them. You can still call for help and you can still leave your home to seek help. You do not have to stay at home. Solace is here for you and you are not alone.

We know that it is precisely when a woman tries to flee domestic abuse that she is most at risk of serious harm from the perpetrator and we also know that isolation is used by perpetrators as part of domestic abuse,” says Fiona Dwyer, Solace CEO.

“Solace calls on the Government and local authorities to urgently make it clear that lockdown rules do not apply to those escaping domestic abuse and that help is available for everyone.

You are not alone. Christmas is a time of year when people living with domestic abuse feel especially vulnerable, COVID- 19 lockdown is increasing people’s fear and anxiety.

We are here for you. You are not alone.”

If you are living with abuse lockdown rules do not apply to you.

If you are in immediate danger call 999.

If you are too afraid to speak press 55.

Call the National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247