Cumbria police, in partnership with Victim Support, Cumbria County Council and the NSPCC, have made the decision to continue with their online social media ‘surgeries’ as a permanent weekly event, following a successful trial period.

The surgeries, which were initiated in March 2020, following concerns from local leading experts of the possible effects of lockdown on those who are vulnerable to abuse at home, have been hailed a success, receiving recognition from the government.

The surgeries have become a new way of working for the police and partner agencies and offer the public a simple, confidential way of being able to receive help and support, as well as being a safe place to report incidents of abuse, either as a victim, or as a family member or friend worried about someone who may be at risk.

Detective Sergeant Rebecca Joseph, who leads the domestic abuse surgery said: “The social media surgeries have proven to be an excellent way for the agencies involved to share information with members of the public and raise awareness of domestic abuse. 

“We are able to provide information around a diverse range of domestic abuse topics, from the impact of domestic abuse on mental health, stalking, controlling and coercive behaviour to disabled victims of domestic abuse and honour based violence. 

“We have had support from a vast range of other agencies and also members of the public including survivors of domestic abuse who have shared their stories in the hope that this will encourage others to come forward and seek help. 

“We are working hard to make sure that the content that we share is relevant and are grateful for any suggestions from the public. Any other agencies who could bring their knowledge and experience to this project are encouraged to get in touch and get involved”.

The domestic abuse support surgery is held each Monday between 11-12pm on the Cumbria police Facebook page.

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