Domestic abuse

If someone who is supposed to love you makes you feel afraid, you could be a victim of domestic abuse.

It can happen to anyone, no matter who they are. It can happen between current or ex-partners and between family members.

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, always call 999.

Domestic abuse can include:

  • physical violence – including hitting, kicking, pushing, slapping, hair pulling, throwing things
  • psychological and emotional abuse – including threatening to hurt someone, stopping someone from seeing other people, humiliating, blaming or controlling, intimidating or harassing someone, verbally abusing someone and bullying
  • unwanted sexual behaviour – anything that makes someone else feel uncomfortable, including sexual comments, leering, groping, rubbing indecent acts, taking photos of a sexual nature without consent, sexual assault and rape
  • controlling behaviour – including controlling access to personal items, food and drink, certain items of clothing, using the phone and internet and checking where someone has been
  • financial abuse – including controlling access to money or forcing someone to spend their money in a certain way, stopping someone from working
How to get help

Help is out there and you will be taken seriously.

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, always call 999.

To talk to us about your own situation or report your concerns about someone else when it’s not an emergency, call us on 0800 40 50 40 or text 61016. You can also call your local police on 101, visit your nearest police station or speak to a police officer or police community support officer in person.

Please be ready to give as many details as you can, including:

  • Your name or the name of the person you are calling about
  • Where you or the person you are calling about live
  • Why you are concerned about your own or someone else’s welfare and safety

If you don’t want to speak to the police, tell someone you trust. This could be a friend, your GP, other healthcare professional, social worker or support worker.

Clare's Law - Domestic violence disclosure scheme (England and Wales)


The domestic violence disclosure scheme in England and Wales gives people the right to ask police to check whether a new or existing partner, or someone in a relationship with someone they know, has a violent past.

It was introduced in 2014 following the murder of Clare Wood in 2009 by her former partner, who had a record of violence against women. It is sometimes known as Clare’s Law.

If you want to make an application for information under the scheme, contact your local police. Find your local police and how to contact them.

Disclosure scheme for domestic abuse (Scotland)

A domestic abuse disclosure scheme also operates in Scotland, giving people the right to ask police to check whether a new or existing partner, or someone in a relationship with someone they know, has a violent past.

Find out more about disclosure scheme for domestic abuse Scotland


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Contact Us

To report a crime or incident, call

0800 40 50 40

or text 61016

In an emergency call 999

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