Hair and beauty students trained to spot tell-tale signs of domestic abuse

Students Tia Copland, Molly Hooper and Rhiannon Lamb with their certificates after training at Suffolk New College

Students Tia Copland, Molly Hooper and Rhiannon Lamb with their certificates after training at Suffolk New College in how to spot signs of domestic abuse - Credit: Suffolk New College

Hair and beauty students have been trained to spot signs of domestic abuse, as part of a campaign to support victims.

Around 20 students received a full day's training, led by experts, at Suffolk New College in Ipswich.

The event mirrored the values of Cut It Out campaign, rolled out in Norfolk and other areas of the country after the tragic murder of Norwich mum Kerri McAuley.

It was organised by Suffolk County Council, supported by the safeguarding team at the college.

A close-up photo of a hairdresser at work

Hairdressing students at Suffolk New College have received training in how to spot signs of domestic abuse - Credit: Archant

Teri Cudby, a domestic abuse champions co-ordinator at Suffolk County Council, said: “Kerri McAuley was murdered by her ex-partner a matter of weeks after sharing her fears of 'he’s going to kill me' with her hairdresser.

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"These students are about to enter an industry where their conversations with clients could include similar disclosures.

"This training will increase their knowledge and confidence in responding to disclosures and recognising signs in those victims not yet ready to share. These students will know how to respond and what to do next, which could save a life.” 

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Heather Hunt, student support and safeguarding manager at the college, said: “Domestic abuse can affect anyone from any background. Through this awareness day, it is our hope that these students will recognise the indicators of domestic abuse, feel empowered to discuss it and then be able to signpost their future clients to appropriate professional support.

“This is something that the college is very supportive of and we feel that the students have benefitted greatly by being involved."

Tia Copland from Ipswich, 18, a level three beauty student at Suffolk New College, said, “The training was really useful. This has helped us spotlight the little signs to look for so that we can give support that could potentially save someone’s life.”

Rhiannon Lamb from Ipswich, 19, a beauty therapy student, said: “During lockdown the figures for domestic abuse have increased, so the training was very timely.”

Another beauty therapy student, Molly Hooper, who lives near Framlingham, said: “It gave us an insight into how we can help people. I feel a lot more prepared after this training.”

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