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Report Abuse in Education NSPCC Helpline
The Department for Education has commissioned the NSPCC to establish a dedicated independent helpline for people who have experienced abuse in education. The Report Abuse in Education helpline comes after a high number of anonymous testimonials were submitted to the Everyone’s Invited website, documenting abuse in all types of schools, colleges, and universities.
The helpline went live on 1 April and will provide both children and adults who have experienced sexual abuse in schools with support and advice, including onward action such as contacting the police if they wish to. The helpline will also provide support to parents and professionals. Anyone who gets in touch through this dedicated helpline will also be signposted to other relevant support services available, including Childline, which provides ongoing support and counselling to children and young people.
The dedicated and confidential NSPCC helpline – Report Abuse in Education can be reached on 0800 136 663 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Domestic Abuse Bill
The Domestic Abuse Act was passed by both Houses of Parliament and signed into law on 29th April 2021. It will provide further protection to the millions of people who experience domestic abuse and strengthen measures to tackle perpetrators.
For the first time in history there will be a wide-ranging legal definition of domestic abuse which incorporates a range of abuses beyond physical violence,
including emotional, coercive, or controlling behaviour, and economic abuse.
The measures include important new protections and support for victims ensuring that abusers will no longer be allowed to directly cross-examine their victims in the family
and civil courts and giving victims better access to special measures in the courtroom to help prevent intimidation, such as protective screens and giving evidence via video link.
Other measures included in the act are:
- extending the controlling or coercive behaviour offence to cover post- separation abuse.
- explicitly recognise children as victims if they see, hear or experience the effects of abuse.
- establish in law the office of Domestic Abuse Commissioner and set out the Commissioner’s functions and powers
- placing a duty on local authorities in England to provide support to victims of domestic abuse and their children in refuges and other safe accommodation.
- provide that all eligible homeless victims of domestic abuse automatically have ‘priority need’ for homelessness assistance
- place the guidance supporting the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (“Clare’s law”) on a statutory footing.
Further information is available from the Government website. Over the coming weeks, we will be working closely with colleagues in KCC to provide more advice and support to schools in relation to the changes in the Act.