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Home > Communities > Community Safety > Domestic Abuse and Domestic Violence

Domestic Abuse and Domestic Violence


What is Domestic Violence and Domestic Abuse?

"Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

Whatever form it takes it is rarely a one-off incident and should instead be seen as a pattern of abusive and controlling behaviour through which the abuser seeks power over their victim. If left unchallenged it can become more frequent and severe.

Family members are defined as Mother, Father, Son, Daughter, Brother, Sister and Grandparents, whether directly related, in-laws or step family.


This can encompass, but is not limited to, the following types of abuse:

  • psychological
  • physical
  • sexual
  • financial
  • emotional


This could involve:

  • Actual or threat of physical harm.
  • Deprivation of food, sleep or money.
  • Biting, pushing, kicking, punching.
  • Name calling and verbal threats.
  • Sexual threats or forced sex.
  • Use of weapons.
  • Emotional blackmail.
  • Isolation from family or friends.
  • Imprisonment in your own home.
  • Humiliation or belittlement.
  • Using your children against you.


If you answer yes to any of the above, you may be living with domestic abuse.


Do you need help or know anyone who does?
If you are in a violent or abusive relationship or if you know or are supporting somebody in that situation, don’t suffer in silence, help is available from the agencies listed below:


For emergencies call the Police by dialling 999, they will respond, investigate and assist you.
For non-emergency numbers call 101.

National Domestic Violence Helpline Number
(FREEPHONE) 0808 2000 247
24 hour service


See also: National Domestic Violence Website

New Dawn Suffolk

Lighthouse Women’s Aid: 24 hour helpline (for confidential advice): 01473 745111


Suffolk County Council – Domestic abuse help and advice

The Ferns - sexual assault referral centre - One stop location offering medical care and emotional support to any victim of sexual assault and rape

0300 123 5058


Suffolk Rape Crisis (Women and girls only) helpline

08000 850520


Karma Nirvana -  ‘Honour’ Based Violence, Forced Marriage, 
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

0800 5999247


NSPCC - New Free FGM 24hr advice and support

0800 0283550


Polish Domestic Violence Helpline
01270 260106

Nowe Życie Bez Przemocy

Polish: Telefony zaufania Lister powyżej dostępne są również w języku polskim i litewskim
Lithuanian: Linijoms Lister aukščiau taip pat yra lenkų, lietuvių
The helplines listed above are available in Polish and Lithuanian.

(Men’s Advice Line and Enquiries)
A confidential helpline for men experiencing domestic abuse and violence from their partners or ex-partners.
0808 801 0327

Victim Support - Support line 0808 16 89 111


Suffolk Gay and Lesbian Helpline
(FREEPHONE) 0300 330 0630


Crime stoppers
0800 555 111


Help for young people

0800 1111


NSPCC National Helpline
0800 8000 5000


Clare’s Law

People with concerns about their partner’s history are able to request background information from Suffolk police.
The aim of this scheme is to give you a formal mechanism to make inquiries about your partner if you are worried that they may have been abusive in the past.


How do I make an application?

An application can only be made by contacting the police


  • Phone 101 the non-emergency number for the police
  • Visit a police station
  • Speak to a member of the police on the street.