Survivors of domestic abuse have hailed the ‘life-changing’ support Nottinghamshire Police gave them in their time of need.
It comes as the force today (10 February) revealed nine out of ten survivors of domestic abuse are satisfied with the service Nottinghamshire Police provides in getting justice and supporting them whenever they’ve called for help.
More than 89 per cent of people surveyed said the force met their expectations when they reached out for support, while 98 per cent were happy with the way their initial call was handled when they first reported their experiences to the force control room.
One survivor, who has left feedback anonymously to protect their identify – has highlighted just how much this support has meant to them.
They said: “What the officer did has impacted my life today. The advice she gave me has brought me into living a normal life with my kids.”
Another person added: “They were absolutely marvellous, they really were. I was impressed with how they handled it and how quickly they acted on it, which made me feel so much safer. I couldn’t have asked for better officers.”
Specially trained officers from Nottinghamshire Police’s public protection team are always on hand to support those experiencing domestic abuse, and have the specific skills needed to investigate sexual offences and domestic crimes.
These officers can utilise a range of different domestic violence legislation, such as Clare’s Law, to protect people impacted by domestic abuse and also work with various external agencies like Women’s Aid to ensure they receive all the ongoing help they need.
The team received recognition for their innovative work safeguarding those affected throughout the lockdown, with officers visiting people at their homes and regularly checking up on them – a point that was highlighted as crucial by one survivor.
They wrote: “The officer spent a lot of time with me and she had the patience to listen to me. She has kept in touch. Even when things started going back to normal, she contacted me to see how I was, how I was doing, how things are, which was really nice of her and made me feel even better.”
Another survivor described the support they received as “perfect”.
Nottinghamshire Police is determined to continue to offer a service that meets the needs of domestic abuse survivors and do all it can to keep victims and witnesses safe.
Superintendent Peter Quinn, of Nottinghamshire Police’s public protection team, said: “Ensuring the safety of people who are impacted by domestic abuse is an absolutely priority for Nottinghamshire Police.
“Our officers see the impact domestic abuse has, not only survivors but also their wider network of family and friends, which is precisely why we all want to do our best to support, advise, and keep people safe from harm.
“Nobody should ever have to suffer abuse or violence in their own homes but for anyone who is living this reality, it is important that you are not alone and our officers are always here to help.
“The public protection team exists specifically to help those who need urgent support, so it is reassuring to know that, on a continued basis, around nine in every ten survivors are satisfied with the services they receive.
“I take great pride in reviewing feedback where survivors have praised our officers for making a difference to the quality of their life and use it to learn and improve to ensure even more people receive the support they need.”
There are a number of different ways people get in touch with police if they are experiencing domestic abuse and need support, whether that be through 999 in an emergency, or via 101 in a non-emergency situation.
People can also get in touch if they need help but aren’t in a position to speak at that time, just by dialling 999 and using the ‘silent call’ option, where they simply need to remain silent and the call taker will then give them instructions on how to communicate with officers.
Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry said: “I hope that the positive feedback here encourages others who may be experiencing domestic abuse in all its forms to contact Nottinghamshire Police. Also, for advice and support for survivors and victims of domestic abuse call our 24-hour freephone Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 800 0340.”
The force routinely engages with survivors of domestic abuse to better understand their levels of satisfaction with the support provided, in order to identify what is working well and what isn’t working as well, so that lessons can be learned to continually improve the service for everyone in the community.
Read more of the feedback from the survey below, which has been shared anonymously to protect all their identities:
“What the officer did has impacted my life today. The advice she gave me has brought me into living a normal life with my kids. The officer spent a lot of time with me and she had the patience to listen to me.
“She has kept in touch. Even when things started going back to normal, she contacted me to see how I was, how I was doing, how things are, which was really nice of her and made me feel even better. She was very sympathetic in her tone of voice – you could feel it. She was observant and listened.”
“I would like to say thank you to them. They were fantastic and very professional. They gave me the time to calm down and let me get my breath to speak because I was in shock. I would like to thank them for all their respect and understanding. They spoke to me politely and there was a lot of empathy.
“They helped me with the situation, they understood I was shocked so put lots of time in. They were perfect. It was the first time I had rung the police. I would like to say thank you for all the support I received that night. Thank you for understanding.”
“The following day after the police had been, the officer came out with a Women’s Aid worker. She was very helpful and offered lots of support. I explained that I’ve got a good network of close friends and family and my sister lives opposite.
“If I hadn’t had everybody around me, then the support from Women’s Aid would have been useful.I can’t fault anything that the police or Women’s Aid have done, they were really good.
“The police were really good, they arrived promptly, they were polite, made me feel safe and put my mind at rest. I wanted to say thank you very much for everything everyone has done.”
“There was a lovely lady officer – she was absolutely amazing. In terms of just speaking, I think she could see that I was terrified to even speak to people about it (the incident). She gave me lots of reassurance and made me feel safe.
“She gave me her work mobile number so I could see it was her calling, as she wanted me to be able to answer. I thought that was really well thought through and considerate. They handled the whole situation well. Nottinghamshire Police were much better than I thought they would be and exceeded my expectations.”
“I was really pleasantly surprised at just how seriously they did take it and how quickly they acted on it as well. There was a male and a female officer and they were wonderful. They were absolutely marvellous, they really were.
“I was impressed with how they handled it and how quickly they acted on it, which made me feel so much safer. I couldn’t have asked for better officers.”