Deaf domestic abuse victims receive specialist support
November 18th, 2021
LOCAL charity, Cambridgeshire Deaf Association, is providing additional support to Deaf victims of domestic abuse thanks to a funding boost from Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Police and Crime Commissioner, Darryl Preston.
More than £21,000 has been provided to fund a part time IDVA (Independent Domestic Abuse Advocate) to support both male and female victims of domestic abuse within the local Deaf community.
“Our existing services do work hard to support victims from all communities but Cambridgeshire Deaf Association are in a unique position to be able to truly understand the barriers some Deaf victims face and to provide bespoke support,” Darryl Preston said. “British Sign Language (BSL) is an entirely separate language from English and communication barriers should never be reason that a victim of domestic abuse does not access the support available to them.”
Deaf women, compared to hearing women, are twice as likely to experience domestic abuse in their lifetime.
Rachael Dance, Cambridgeshire Deaf Association Service Manager, said:
“We have found over the years that there is an increasing need for support services in BSL to allow Deaf victims to access support safely and equally to the rest of the population. Our mission statement is to improve well-being in the Deaf community and supporting victims of domestic abuse is paramount in achieving this.
“All of our staff are fluent in BSL and trained in domestic violence to a basic level and we are keen to keep our services as accessible as possible with support being offered in BSL, International sign language, various European sign languages and contact being made over email, text, video call and face to face meetings has really allowed us to branch out and reach as many people as possible.”
For more information about the services Cambridgeshire Deaf Association provide visit, www.cambsdeaf.org.