Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird DBE QC, has welcomed today’s government announcement that 76 projects across the country will receive a share of £20 million to support victims of domestic abuse – £660,000 of this will pay for refuge bed space and support services in Northumbria, helping an estimated 300 victims.
Vera Baird was an official partner of the local consortium who bid for vital funding and is delighted that the application, made by the six local authorities (Sunderland, Newcastle, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead and Northumberland), has been successful.
The project will be led by Newcastle City Council and will be supported by neighbouring councils, Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, local police, specialist domestic abuse services, local health partnerships, drug misuse charities and housing providers.
The funding will support a wide range of services and safe accommodation for victims of domestic abuse with complex needs including refuge provision, move on accommodation, outreach services and ‘sanctuary provisions’ which help those at risk of violence to stay safe in their own homes through improved security measures.
Vera Baird said: “Being successful in securing this funding is a great local triumph. It will help us improve and strengthen the availability of specialist accommodation and support throughout the region, particularly for those who may have struggled to access services in the past.
“Partnership work is very strong in Northumbria and there is a shared commitment across the region to ensuring victims of domestic abuse have access to the best support possible.
“It’s a huge step for anyone to leave an abusive partner, but if a victim feels they have a safe place to go, and can benefit from a committed support worker, they are less likely to remain in a relationship where they are suffering in silence.
“Having these provisions readily available is vitally important. We are lucky to have a host of fantastic refuges and other domestic abuse services in our area, offering sanctuary to those living in abusive and violent relationships – this money will allow us to build on this further and help even more victims escape the nightmare they suffer so they can move on without living in fear.”