Rachel Thain, a lawyer in our specialist abuse department, looks the impact the coronavirus pandemic and consequent lockdown is having on those who have suffered abuse.
During the unprecedented time we find ourselves living through, most of us are spending significantly more time at home. For some people social distancing can result in feelings of isolation and loneliness. I am spending this time checking in with many of my clients who I know to be vulnerable, to offer them what support I can during this crisis. Thankfully, I am able to reassure them I am continuing to work as normal on their behalf.
One such conversation centred around the idea that many people rely on keeping busy to occupy their minds, to avoid thinking about difficult and upsetting things from their past and prevent painful memories from beginning to resurface. This really got me thinking about not only those people who my team and I are currently helping, but also about those who may want to reach out during this time for legal advice, but feel nervous about doing so or do not know where to start.
In fact it is being reported that the coronavirus crisis itself is leading to abuse taking place and in the present circumstances it is so much harder for victims to escape that abuse.
First and foremost, my advice to our clients and anyone who is finding the current changes to the way we must live our lives difficult is to seek help and support as soon as possible. Although the ways in which such help can be accessed may have changed, the support is very much still there for those that need it. Remember you are not alone and talking to the right people can make a huge difference.
If you are struggling and need help and support, don’t suffer in silence; take action. There are so many amazing organisations out there who can help you, here are just a few:
Samaritans – 116 123 https://www.samaritans.org/
Childline – 0800 1111 https://www.childline.org.uk/
Mind – 0300 123 3393 https://www.mind.org.uk/
Refuge National Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0808 2000 247 https://www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk/
Throughout the current crisis, our specialist abuse team here at Slee Blackwell are continuing to offer a free, confidential helpline to those who need help with coronavirus and abuse issues. Just give us a call on 0808 139 1606 or send an email to [email protected]