From radio to real life

Radio shows like 'The Archers' shine the spotlight on domestic abuse. But do you know what to do if you see it or experience it in real life?

One in four women in England and Wales are victims of domestic violence, a recent study found. And men and children also suffer.

What is domestic violence and abuse?

Domestic abuse takes place between people who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members. Differences in social background, sexuality or ethnicity do not explain it.

There are several types of domestic violence and abuse:

  • psychological or emotional – bullying, belittling, stalking or threats to cut contact with children if a person leaves
  • physical – kicking, hitting, pushing, hurting
  • sexual – sexual harassment or rape
  • financial – control over spending, or running up huge credit card debts in another's name, for example.

How the law can help with domestic abuse

Domestic abuse is wrong. At home, you should feel safe. Domestic abuse can be a criminal offence. You may need help from a lawyer.  A lawyer can help you get protection from court so that you (and your children) can leave a relationship safely.

Get help with domestic abuse

If you or someone else is in danger, you should dial 999. If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, you can get free help and advice.

Citizens Advice has a list of other organisations that offer support. Here at Legal Choices, you can learn more about dealing with other family problems.