Don’t take it out on your loved one this World Cup.
That’s the message being given by the emergency services this summer, echoed by the safeguarding team at Blackpool Victoria Hospital who are keen to stamp out domestic violence.
Studies carried out by Lancashire Police show cases of domestic violence can increase up to 25 per cent during World Cup years.
Dee Inott, safeguarding adults nurse practitioner at the hospital’s Victoria Centre, said: “Domestic violence is usually something that happens in the home when the weather is good and people have been drinking.
“There will be more of an opportunity with the football on and emotions are escalating.
“With lots of people together it only takes one incident before the violence kicks off.”
Dee says it’s important for anyone who is a victim of domestic violence not to make excuses for their attacker.
“It’s easy for those responsible to play it down,” she added.
“Maybe they’ll say it only happens when they’ve had a drink, or it was out of frustration because their team lost.
“But there is no excuse for this.”
Dee’s own message is that victims, whether they are women or men, should not suffer in silence.
She said: “A lot of the time victims don’t want to go to the police, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be supported.
“We can offer them any treatment they might need, and put them in contact with support services like Fylde Coast Women’s Aid and Empowerment.”
Dee’s role at The Vic is to educate staff to ask the right questions, in the right way, when a patient comes into the Emergency Department displaying signs of domestic abuse.
“This week’s patient could be next week’s murder victim,” she said.
“We need to make sure they have the right support now to take them out of that situation.
“There are agencies out there to support them and their families.
“Domestic abuse is not acceptable, though it is very common.”
Anyone who needs support can contact Fylde Coast Women’s Aid on (01253) 596699 or Empowerment on (01253) 477959.