To mark Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Croydon Advertiser published a series of features examining the state of violence in the home within the borough of Croydon. In a follow-up piece penned for the Advertiser, Croydon Council leader Tony Newman pledges the authority will keep fighting against the problem of abuse in the home...
RACHEL Slack, Maria Stubbings, Katie Summers, Casey Brittle, Clare Wood – young women who should now be in the prime of their lives.
Instead, all have, in recent years, lost those lives as a direct result of the hate crime that is domestic violence. Many other women, as the excellent coverage of this difficult subject in the Croydon Advertiser highlights, have suffered horrific experiences but have escaped with their lives and are now looking to better and more secure futures.
Our Labour administration in Croydon made it clear when we took office in June that tackling the ever-increasing number of reported cases of domestic violence and abuse would be one of the council's top priorities – and it is.
That is why we are committing to becoming a White Ribbon borough and we will be formally launching this on International Day Against Violence Against Women on November 25.
White Ribbon status will formally recognise that Croydon is making the tackling of domestic violence one of the key borough-wide priorities.
I am proud that it was a previous Labour administration that put in place Europe's first Family Justice Centre (FJC), in 2005. This is where all the public services – such as the police, NHS, social services and others – are under one roof.
So, as part of our journey to achieving White Ribbon status, we will launch more education programmes within our schools, and ensure that everyone who works in public services, such as the NHS and police, are trained to the very highest standards in terms of spotting the symptoms of domestic violence.
The ongoing increases in incidents of domestic violence in Croydon are completely unacceptable, so it is time to collectively redouble our efforts and ensure we are the generation that says loudly and clearly: "Enough is enough."
If you need help or advice, call: 24-hour domestic violence helpline – 080 8200 0247 Croydon Family Justice Centre – 0208 688 0100.