Domestic abuse is any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between adults who are or have been in a relationship together, or between family members, regardless of gender, age, race or sexual orientation.
We treat all reports of domestic abuse seriously and we are committed to working in partnership with other agencies to ensure the safety of all those who may be, or have been, the subject of domestic abuse.
We work with partners including the police, Barnsley Council, charities and support providers to ensure the best outcome for all. Our current partnerships include:
- IDAS. (IDAS is our chosen partner for offering support to victims and perpetrators in Barnsley);
- the police, who are the most appropriate body to take immediate action where there has been abuse or a fear of abuse and may apply for a Domestic Violence Protection Notice (DVPN) resulting in a Domestic Violence Protection Order (DVPO);
- Barnsley Council Children and Adult Services; and
- Barnsley Council Housing Options Team (who offer advice and assistance with the need for emergency rehousing).
We acknowledge that Domestic Abuse is a sensitive and complex issue and we are not experts in this field. So our policy is about effective partnership working being the best way to make sure that the victim receives the most effective support to address the issues, and the perpetrator is dealt with effectively, including helping them get support to address their behaviour.
We see our role as:
- Recognising the signs; and
- Working with partners to respond to the issues.
We do this by:
- ensuring all staff are trained to “spot the signs” and know how to offer that first steo support/referral;
- supporting the victim;
- referring to specialist agencies who can tackle the complex issues and give advice on legal action, and working with them to achieve the best outcome;
- raising safeguarding concerns; and/or
- referring to the police.
Our specific and direct action includes:
- taking steps to make the property safe;
- supporting rehousing of the victim; ;
- supporting the transfer of tenancies;
- where relevant taking enforcement action to end a perpetrator’s tenancy; and/or
- assessing any rehousing needs of the perpetrator.
When we receive a report that someone has been a victim of domestic abuse, we will:
- take the report seriously;
- respect the confidentiality of victims and the person who reported the incident (who may be different);
- interview the people in a safe, private place, and make sure they have support if they need it;
- make sure you are interviewed by someone of the same sex as you, if you ask for it;
- investigate complaints in a sensitive and unbiased way;
- take firm and quick action against people who we know are guilty of domestic abuse, including removing them from the tenancy, in line with our tenancy agreement;
- take action to help victims to stay in their homes;
- work with other agencies where this will help, and with the victim’s permission;
- discuss any action we plan to take with the person who has complained; and
- carry out emergency repairs that are needed but we may charge for the cost of repairs.
All our housing management teams, who are our front-line staff working with people living on our estates, have been trained to understand domestic abuse, and to give advice on where people can get expert and specialised support in Barnsley.
We can give advice on:
- emergency housing;
- the support you can get to help you stay in your own home;
- where to go for advice about housing (if you are at risk of becoming homeless, we can put you in touch with our team that helps homeless people);
- your rights under our tenancy agreement, and how to apply for other accommodation; and
- support agencies in Barnsley that help victims of domestic abuse.
You can report incidents:
- ONLINE – click here
- SMARTPHONE – download our free app ‘Looking local’
- PHONE us on 01226 775555
- PERSON – contact us to make an appointment at one of our customer service centres.
For immediate help in an emergency call the Police on 999.
- We work closely with IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Service) to support residents in Barnsley who are suffering or have suffered from domestic abuse. The partnership is passionate about preventing domestic abuse and encouraging healthy relationships through our #SpeakUp campaign, letting people in Barnsley know there is someone there for them. Follow this link to find out more.
- English National Domestic Violence helpline – 24 hour free phone helpline 0808 2000 247. They can offer you practical help and advice, including:
- emergency accommodation;
- safety planning and advice; and
- translation facilities if you have difficulty with English.
- South Yorkshire Police – Domestic Abuse Co-ordinators offer support and advice to women and men and can also take action if people need it. You can speak to these officers in confidence. hone: 101 Ask for the Domestic Abuse Co-ordinators.
- The Samaritans provide confidential, emotional support, 24 hours a day for people who are feeling distress or despair. Phone: National 24-hour helpline – 116 123, local number: 01226 202222
- Worst Kept Secret is a Freephone confidential helpline for people who are affected by domestic abuse. Calls to this number will not show up on landline phone bills. Phone: 0800 028 3398
(For women only)
- Barnsley Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Helpline (BSARCH) provides helpline support and face-to-face counselling for women over 16 who have been raped or sexually abuse at any time in their lives. All BSARCH counsellors and helpline workers are fully trained women volunteers and their services are free and confidential. Phone: 01226 320140
(For men only)
- Men’s Advice Line provides advice and support for men in abusive relationships. Phone: 0808 801 0327