Local abuse rate low but police reach out


The 12 months to September 30 saw 620 domestic abuse crimes recorded across Lisburn and Castlereagh, one of the lowest rates in the province according to recent police figures.

The news came as the Police Service of Northern Ireland launched its Domestic Abuse Christmas Campaign to encourage anyone who is a victim of abuse to report it.

The campaign, ‘Domestic abuse is wrong, pick up the phone and make it stop’ aims to encourage the reporting of incidents and make domestic abuse victims aware that they can take steps to stop it.

It will run online throughout December and officers will also be distributing posters across Northern Ireland.

Detective Chief Superintendent George Clarke, Head of the PSNI’s Public Protection Branch, said: “The sad reality is that at this time of year the number of domestic incidents increases.

“On Christmas Day alone last year there were 79 recorded incidents and on Boxing Day there were 111.

“That is a total of 190 incidents over that two -day period.

“In the period from 24 December to 28 December last year there were a total of 515 recorded domestic incidents.

“These statistics are shocking, especially when you consider the fact that behind every statistic is a victim who has had to endure abuse and that those victims, both male and female, may have suffered abuse many times before calling the police or contacting other agencies for assistance.

“Between October 2014 and September 2015, there were 28, 189 incidents of domestic abuse reported.

“Over the same period, last year there were 27, 974 incidents of domestic abuse reported.

“We also know that a large number of incidents aren’t reported to police at all.

“As the Police Service of Northern Ireland it is our job to keep people safe. We know that domestic abuse is a frightening crime which can affect anyone, often leaving them feeling isolated and alone.

“We are launching this campaign to remind everyone no-one should have to endure abuse. If you are a victim, remember you are not alone.”

The 24-hour Domestic Helpline is 0808 802 1 414.