A domestic abuse awareness campaign is being taken right into the heart of Tameside communities to get local people talking about it.
Tameside Council has relaunched the Greater Manchester Sitting Right With You Campaign by taking its iconic yellow sofa to recognisable local landmarks.
The aim is to highlight that individuals, children and families across the borough are affected by domestic abuse and that support is available.
But it also aims to make domestic abuse everyone’s businesses in Tameside, so people can be aware of abusive behaviours and warning signs to help prevent abuse before it happens.
Domestic abuse isn’t just violence – it can also involve controlling and coercive behaviour, such as controlling someone's money or preventing them from seeing family and friends.
Tameside’s domestic abuse service, Bridges, is currently receiving around 90 referrals per month. The most common type of abuse is male to female, from an ex-partner, but people of all gender identities and ages can be perpetrators and victims.
Domestic abuse can have a significant impact on children in the household, even if parents believe they do not witness the abusive incidents and behaviours. Without the right support, these experiences can be contributing factors to why some children then go on to display harmful behaviours to their parents, peers and even their own partners in the future.
The council say it is due to launch a new domestic abuse strategy later this month, which will be used to drive further improvement work to get help and support to people earlier.
Councillor Eleanor Wills, Executive Member responsible for population health, said: “I have been a victim of domestic abuse and have been open about my experience of domestic abuse and the negative impacts it had on my life.
"I think it’s important that we are committed to not just reacting to domestic abuse when it is presented to us, but to proactively work in partnership with local communities and organisations to identify warning signs and prevent abuse before it happens and we’re investing in programmes to support this work.
“As part of this we want to make domestic abuse everybody’s business in Tameside so people are aware of the behaviours, signs and the support available as well as being more open to talking about it.
"The bottom line is no person should experience domestic abuse - no matter your gender, no matter your ethnicity, no matter your age, disability or sexuality and help is available.”
For information on the support available, visit www.tameside.gov.uk/domesticabuse or you can call Bridges 24 hour helpline on 0800 328 0967. In an emergency, you should always call 999.