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Domestic Violence Increase For Christmas


18 December 2012

Domestic Violence Increase For Christmas

Those providing support to victims of domestic abuse and family violence are gearing up for an increase in calls as Christmas nears.

Leading national anti-domestic abuse agency SHINE hopes that the numbers won’t match last year’s huge increase in calls but they’re not optimistic.

Shine Client Services Director Jill Proudfoot says domestic violence referrals around the country were up 40 percent on the previous year between Christmas and New Year last year.

Ms Proudfoot says in the current economic climate there are more stresses than before on relationships and family dynamics.

“At this time of the year an increase in alcohol consumption can also exacerbate problems arising from separated parents, extended families, unemployment and even where to spend Christmas holidays.”

“It is important to understand that these kinds of stressors do not actually cause domestic abuse, but rather exacerbate abusive dynamics that already exist,” Ms Proudfoot says. “For example a partner that uses various tactics to control a partner may use financial stress or alcohol as an excuse to lash out.”

Shine is one of two agencies nationwide operating a Helpline 7 days a week including Christmas and New Year’s Days for families needing help.

Helpline advocates can assist callers with safety planning, risk assessment, and referral information,” says Ms Proudfoot. The agency is among those offering a safe house or home safety support.

She urges anyone associated with or knowing of someone being abused to do something about it.

“If it is too dangerous to intervene, ring the police. If is less urgent, but you don’t know what to do, ring the Shine Helpline for advice!”

Shine Helpline 0508-744-633 (7 days/week, 9am – 11pm)

Shine is a leading provider of services working to stop domestic abuse. We help women; children and men get out of the cycle of family violence and give the chance of a better, happier, safer future.

ENDS

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