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Domestic abuse and sexual violence support

Domestic abuse can involve physical, controlling or coercive behaviour, verbal, emotional and financial or online abuse, and threats to harm or kill you.

Domestic Violence and Abuse is threatening, controlling, coercive behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, virtual, physical, verbal, sexual, financial or emotional) inflicted on anyone (irrespective of age, ethnicity, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation or any form of disability) by a current or former intimate partner of family member.

Sexual Violence and Abuse is any behaviour (physical, psychological, verbal, virtual/online) perceived to be of a sexual nature which is controlling, coercive, exploitative, harmful or unwanted that is inflicted on anyone (irrespective of age, ethnicity, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation or any form of disability).

Coercive, exploitative and harmful behaviour includes taking advantage of an individual’s incapacity to give informed consent.

– Stopping Domestic and Sexual Violence and Abuse in Northern Ireland Strategy 2016

Domestic abuse is a crime

You do not have to be harmed physically or emotionally by abusive behaviour for it to be an offence.

Domestic abuse is an offence when:

  • “there has been a pattern of abusive behaviour two or more times
  • the two individuals are partners or former partners, or are family members
  • a reasonable person would consider the behaviour likely to cause physical or psychological harm
  • the abuser intends to cause harm or is reckless to this”
Who to report domestic abuse & violence
  • In an emergency dial 999, if you cannot speak press 55 to let police know it is an emergency
  • Police Service of Northern Ireland: 101 and press 55 if you cannot speak
  • Belfast Trust Adult Protection Gateway Team: 02895041744
  • Speak to a social worker, nurse or medical professional when in contact with Belfast Trust
  • Nexus Domestic & Sexual Violence Helpline: 08088021414 or email
  • GP: you can speak to your local GP for help & support
  • Contact Women’s Aid, Men’s Advisory Project or the Rainbow Project for support and help.
Useful Links and further information

Helpline | Nexus NI

Belfast & Lisburn Women’s Aid |

Women’s Aid Federation Northern Ireland |

MAPNI – Men’s Advisory Project – Male Victims of Domestic Abuse

Rainbow Project |

Victim Support NI | Supporting People Affected By Crime

Sexual Assault Referral Centre – The Rowan

ASSIST NI – Domestic and Sexual Abuse Advocacy Service

Police Service of Northern Ireland |

Up-skirting, down-blousing and cyber-flashing | nidirect

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