Domestic abuse against men on the rise

TWO male victims of domestic violence have today spoken of their ordeals at the hands of their abusive partners.The men, who are from the Ipswich area, spoke out as it emerged that the number of domestic violence reports made to Suffolk police by men had increased to 20 per cent of the total number recorded.

TWO male victims of domestic violence have today spoken of their ordeals at the hands of their abusive partners.

The men, who are from the Ipswich area, spoke out as it emerged that the number of domestic violence reports made to Suffolk police by men had increased to 20 per cent of the total number recorded.

To tackle the problem a new campaign is being launched today by the Domestic Violence and Abuse Project Team (DVAPT).

The launch of the campaign will form part of a male domestic violence and abuse conference which is being held today at Trinity Park in Ipswich.


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The DVAPT, led by Marianne Fellows, is employed by Suffolk County Council and run from Suffolk Police headquarters in Martlesham.

John Budd, chair of Suffolk Criminal Justice Board, said: “We are making significant progress in Suffolk with helping victims of domestic violence come forward and Marianne and her team have undoubtedly made a lot of progress.

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“However, the nature of the crime makes it very difficult to identify those at risk.

“Although female victims consistently experience the highest levels of physical and sexual assaults, domestic violence and abuse can affect anybody, regardless of their gender, age, ethnicity, faith, disability or sexual orientation.”

The campaign is being launched to coincide with Inside Justice Week, from November 3 to November 10, which is designed to highlight the importance of justice for all victims.

For advice on domestic violence, call 0800 783 5121.

Are you a victim of domestic abuse? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

Karl, 28, said: “My partner assaulted me when we were out - she got drunk, and when I tried to get her to leave she hit me.

“I called the police at the time, and although I was worried they would not believed me - I needn't have been, they were really good.

“Over the next few days I was tempted to withdraw my complaint, I just wanted it to be over. We are very much in love, best friends and wanted to make a go of our relationship.

“On the day of the court appearance I was very nervous. The independent domestic violence advocate came out and had a word with me, asking me how I felt now about the incident, and we talked about why I had wanted to withdraw my statement, and if I had any questions about the process at court.

“By talking with her I realised that the only way my partner would get help is if the prosecution continued. I didn't want her to go to prison but I did want her to get help.

“At the magistrates' court she was found guilty and given a community sentence but, also the opportunity to get the help she needed to change her behaviour.”

Jake, 54, said: “My employer did not know I was gay, so my biggest fear was that they might find out.

“Pete and I have been together for seven years and he was always controlling, but it is beginning to get out of hand.

“He accuses me of seeing other men, of being unfaithful. He threatens to 'out' me, or leave me, or hurt himself.

“He has never hit me, but he does hurt me physically and emotionally, in so many ways really.

“I didn't think that anyone would believe me - he is so nice to everyone else.

“Recently I found out about the support services in Suffolk and I am thinking very carefully about my options.

“The independent domestic violence advocate has done some safety work with me. I can't leave him but I feel stronger and know that when the time is right I will be able to get the support I need.”

Statistics show that nationally, one in six men is a victim of domestic abuse.

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