Sanctuary scheme will help victims of violence in North Devon and Torridge

A NEW service to help victims of domestic violence stay safe in their homes has been launched this week.   North Devon Council and Torridge District Council s joint Sanctuary Scheme, aims to support victims by installing free security and safety devices i

A NEW service to help victims of domestic violence stay safe in their homes has been launched this week.

North Devon Council and Torridge District Council's joint Sanctuary Scheme, aims to support victims by installing free security and safety devices in their homes.

The scheme is free of charge and will help victims of domestic abuse, hate crime, racial harassment or other violence to stay safe at home, instead of having to move house.

Some of the security devices that could be installed include window locks, stronger doors, panic alarms and fire safety equipment including smoke detectors and break glass hammers.


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In extreme circumstances a safe room can also be installed, where victims can seek refuge from their attacker and call for the police.

North Devon Council's Lead Member for Health and Housing, Councillor Andrea Davis said: "North Devon Council takes the issues surrounding domestic violence very seriously. Such violence and abuse have devastating effects on not only the victim, but also on any children in the household. They are often witnesses to domestic violence and this can lead to various issues for the children, affecting them into adulthood. Therefore we are pleased to be able to help provide these safety measures."

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Torridge District Council's Lead Member for Housing, Councillor David Lausen, said: "This innovative approach to homelessness prevention is only considered where it is safe to do so, and if it is the victim's choice. Each scheme is tailored to suit the individual needs of the victim."

In order to qualify, victims must have been assessed as suitable by the police and be at risk of being made homeless if assistance isn't given. In addition, the attacker must no longer live in the property and the landlord must give consent for the alterations.

To get help from this new scheme call:

* Women's Aid Outreach Service (North Devon and Torridge) on 01271 370079

* North Devon Council on 01271 325757

* Torridge District Council on 01237 428849

* Police on 08452 777444

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