Harlow Labour councillor calls for more protection for male victims of domestic violence

News / Fri 16th Dec 2022 at 11:29am

A LEADING Harlow Labour councillor has called for more provision for male victims of domestic violence.

Councillor James Griggs put the following question to Councillor Joel Charles (Portfolio Holder for Business and Community Resilience):

Cllr Griggs said: “We have heard much recently about the Health and Wellbeing Strategy for
Harlow. This is very much to be welcomed.

“One area of continuing concern is the provision of safe spaces for men. The
subject of men suffering domestic abuse is often neglected and regarded as
taboo but it is a very real and present problem. Harlow, quite rightly, provides
safe spaces for women but there is a distinct lack of similarly supported
spaces for men.

“The wonderful charity Streets2Homes can support men in these
circumstances but it has limited resources to do so. Recently, Harlow Council
provided a safe space in a hotel for a man in this situation, but he was there
for months. A hotel rarely provides facilities for cooking, leading to expensive
meal costs or a poor diet and it does not provide the right environment for
men to spend time with their children.

“Would Cllr Charles please advise how the council plans to address this

Reply from Councillor Joel Charles (Portfolio Holder for Business and
Community Resilience):

Domestic violence against men and women is not acceptable. The priority
must always be the victims and putting their needs first.

The Centre for Social Justice has stated that one third of domestic abuse
victims nationally are men. It has been estimated by the Office for National
Statistics that 757,000 men reported abuse in 2020 alone.

Addressing the social stigma preventing men to come forward and seek help
about domestic violence must end. The Safer Harlow Partnership, which
Harlow Council, the police and other criminal justice bodies are active
members of, includes domestic violence as one of its priorities. In the
council’s own community safety strategy, a zero-tolerance approach to
domestic violence against men and women is a key priority too.

The council is committed to raising awareness and understanding of domestic abuse, is
working to help ensure professionals are trained to recognise signs of such
criminal activity and backs laws designed to confront the impact on victims.
The lack of appropriate safe spaces for male domestic abuse survivors is an
issue that commands cross-party support in terms of the need to take action.

Councillor Griggs is invited to work with members of the administration and
council officers to look at what practical steps can be taken to provide more
support for male domestic abuse survivors in Harlow.

By working together to confront this matter, the council will be in a far stronger position to develop a
case to secure support services commissioned by Essex County Council to support victims of domestic violence.

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5 Comments for Harlow Labour councillor calls for more protection for male victims of domestic violence:

David Forman
2022-12-16 14:42:14

A lot more should be done for all victims of crime and especially for those brave souls who come forward as witnesses.

2022-12-16 21:12:19

Hopefully more awareness will provide the victims with a better support network and safe refuges from violent partners It's a step in the right direction 👍

Clare Harrison Mccartney
2022-12-16 21:34:37

Good luck with that. They can’t even move me and they knew they were homing me next door to a psychopath who is a danger to women.

The victim
2022-12-17 15:57:14

Men need help as much as women however courts and society always believe " women are week" women can use this to their own advantage. Men the majority of time are never given equal rights in this subject. Women can be very manipulative and controlling. They are not always what they seem they can be the perpetrators.

Clare Harrison Mccartney
2022-12-18 19:03:41

Men do need help as much as women. I completely agree. There used to be a women’s refuge in Harlow but it got cut with austerity. There should be men’s refugees too, which include gay men because abuse happens a lot in gay male relationships and victims often don’t come forward. As far as women being perceived as weaker in court and by society, this is untrue these days. If it was true Harlow council would have moved me and put me in a higher band. It took me four years to get the police to take me seriously and I’m a woman. In the end I got a ring doorbell which caught my next door neighbour verbally abusing me and I caught him on my phone audio shouting “I’m going to rape and kill you.”. I was bullied for so long I wanted to knock him out , but the police told me not to retaliate which is difficult. In the end they put a stop to him abusing me in my flat , but I still have to live next door to him and pass him on the stairs. Also, the guy who lives underneath me ambushed me on the flat stairs a year ago with another man as I was putting my bins out. He was shouting and spitting and screaming in my face accusing me of something I didn’t do , or I did , but he was exaggerating. I hoovered up some salt I dropped because I suffer chronic migraines and fall over a lot due to my neurological disorder, it was at at 1am for about ten seconds and he complained it woke him up. I didn’t mean to wake him up. He went mental at me and it was really scary. He definitely takes drugs or drinks a lot, because he was acting really frightening. Again, I wasn’t allowed to argue back , that’s what the police said. Personally I think if someone starts on you, you should be allowed to have a go back. It’s about time women and men stood up to bullies and there was more care for gay men, because there isn’t and a lot of them suffer in silence and have ptsd. It’s a sad world when someone is a narcissist and the other is an empath. It’s very common and it happens a lot. Luckily I can spot a narcissist and I run a mile, can’t do that when I’m home next door to my abuser though. There should definitely be more protection for men, especially gay men.

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