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If you would like to talk to a Housing Officer about domestic abuse, please contact our Neighbourhood Team on 0800 585 360. Alternatively, you can contact other organisations who specialise in domestic abuse and sexual assault advice and guidance.

Could you, or someone you know, be experiencing domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse can happen to anyone regardless of gender or sexuality.

At Homes in Sedgemoor we understand that it can be very difficult to take the first step to get help.

Here you can find out what domestic abuse is and how Homes in Sedgemoor can help if you, or someone you know, is experiencing any of the signs.

We are committed to acting quickly and sympathetically to anyone who is experiencing domestic abuse. We will:

  • Arrange for you to speak to somebody of the same gender or sexuality if you would prefer.
  • Listen to you and ask you how you wish for us to help you
  • Offer you support and point you in the direction of specialist agencies who can support you.
  • React quickly and effectively to ensure that you are safe
  • Be sensitive and understanding when we discuss your situation.

What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse can cover a wide range of incidents or patterns of incidences, including:

  • Psychological: Making you feel devalued and afraid, if you are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender (LGBT) threatening to ‘out’ you to your family.
  • Physical: Kicking, punching, and restraining 
  • Sexual – Rape, making you do things you don’t want to do, preventing you from practicing safe sex.   
  • Financial – Taking your money and/or controlling your money.  
  • Emotional – Making you feel unhappy 
  • Controlling behaviour – such as isolating you from family and friends.
  • Coercive control – includes a pattern of behaviour to frighten or humiliate you.

If you suspect others of being victims of domestic abuse, things to look out for include:

  • Signs of physical violence – does someone have visible marks on their wrists, face or body?
  • Is their home damaged – are there holes in the walls or doors? Are cupboards missing doors or windows broken?
  • Does the person come across as nervous, anxious, or afraid? Do they appear withdrawn and avoid making eye contact?
  • Does the person try to hide damage to their property or injuries from you?
  • Do they have untreated medical conditions or injuries?
  • Is their home chaotic looking and dirty? Are there lots of flies? Can you see soiled bedding and clothes?
  • Is there any evidence of drug or substance misuse?
  • Is anyone unbathed? Do they have severe body odour?
  • Does a child act in an inappropriate way in your company. Such as using sexually explicit language or using sexually explicit behaviour
  • Does anyone appear dehydrated or malnourished? Do they beg you for food or drink or money?

Answers to commonly asked questions

If you have suffered domestic abuse but still wish to stay in your current home and you are a sole tenant, Homes in Sedgemoor will discuss safety measures with you such as arranging for additional locks, security lights and lock changes to take place.

No, if you report domestic abuse to Homes in Sedgemoor, we will never inform them that you have disclosed this. We can arrange to meet you away from your home, in coffee shops, local hubs etc. to ensure that you are safe. Your safety is our priority.

Somerset Integrated Domestic Abuse Service

Call: 0800 6949 999

Email: SIDAS@Somerset.gov.uk

Men’s Advice Line and Enquires

Call: 0808 801 0327

Email: info@mensadviceline.org.uk

Galop & The National LGBT Domestic Abuse Helpline

Call: 0800 999 5428

Email: help@galop.org.uk

The Hideout

Women’s Aid have created this space to help children and young people to understand domestic abuse, and how to take positive action if it’s happening to you.

Avon and Somerset Police

Call 999 or 101 or your nearest Police station.

Bright Sky

Bright Sky is an app to help people in domestic abuse relationships.

Users can log private journal entries with text, film and photos, which are sent to your designated email address. This is then evidence if you ever need it. The app finds help points nearby and offers users options to: ‘get help for myself’ including deciding if you are at risk; or ‘get help for someone else’ including advice. The app has a 999 button. Do remember any app carries the risk of an abuser finding it on your device.  However, this app has a quick way to cover up the use of the app by appearing as a weather app.

Cover your tracks online

The safest way to access sites if you want to be completely sure of not being tracked online, is to use a computer at a local library, an internet cafe, a friend’s house or at work. We have also included a hide this page button on this page which will quickly take you to another site.

If you’re worried that someone may see what you have been looking at online there’s a few things you can do to minimise the chances of them finding out like deleting your browser history.

Click on the links below for whichever browser you use for instructions on how to do it.

Please remember that although clearing your history minimises the chances of someone knowing what websites you have visited there is other means of finding this out if you have the know how.

Make a Stand Campaign

Homes in Sedgemoor were the first housing organisation to sign up to the Make a Stand Campaign. As part of our Make a Stand pledge, we committed to these four commitments:

  1. 1

    Put in place and embed policy to support residents who are affected by Domestic Abuse. If you would like to see a copy of our policy, contact us.

  2. 2

    Make information about national abuse support services available on your website and in other appropriate places so that they are easily accessible for residents and staff.

  3. 3

    Put in place HR policy or amend an existing policy to support members of staff of may be experiencing domestic abuse.

  4. 4

    Appoint a champion at a senior level in your organisation to own the activity you are doing to support people experiencing domestic abuse.

Domestic Abuse Policy

If you or someone you know needs support with domestic abuse, please read our policy for more information.

Find out more about Domestic Abuse

Find out more about how we can help if you think someone you know is affected by domestic abuse

Silent Service – how to call the police when you can’t speak

If you are in danger and unable to talk on the phone, call 999 and listen to the questions from the operator and, if you can, respond by coughing or tapping on the handset.

Calling 999 from a mobile
If the BT operator cannot determine whether there is anyone on the line, you will hear an automated message asking you to press 55. If you press 55, your call will be transferred to
the police.

Call 999 from a landline
If the BT operator cannot determine whether there is anyone on the line you will be connected to a police call handler. If you replace the handset, the landline may remain connected for 45 seconds. If you pick up again during this 45 seconds and the operator is concerned for your safety, the call will be connected to police.

If you are deaf or can’t use a phone
You can register with the emergencySMS. Text REGISTER to 999. You will get a text which tells
you what to do next. Do this when it is safe so you can text when you are in danger.