It can be difficult to find the words to talk about what has happened to you if you have experienced domestic abuse, forced marriage or honour based abuse. We understand that and you are not alone.  Talking to someone you trust can be helpful for some people.  That may be a trusted friend or relative or for some people they feel more comfortable speaking to a professional. 

If you do talk to someone consider agreeing a code word or phrase with them so that they will know if you need help without alerting their partner or family.

The University can also offer additional forms of support in the following ways:

Support if you are a student 
  •  Completing a form on Report and Support to report your experience. A Wellbeing Advisor from Student Welfare, Advice and Guidance will then contact you within three working days to make an appointment to offer support, advice and guidance. Support can include:
    o   Spending time to simply listen to you
    o   Information and referrals to local external organisations who could offer further support.  Organisations who can offer further support include Victim Support, Refuge and Liverpool Domestic Abuse Service (LDAS). For further information on external organisations please see ‘Additional Support’ section on Report and Support.
    o   Information to support with your studies including Extenuating Circumstances 
  •  All information will be treated sensitively and confidentially 
  • The University counselling service has qualified and experienced therapists who can provide you with a safe place to talk. For more information regarding our Counselling Service please click here
  • The University has on-line resources including the Togetherall online platform or Silvercloud; modules include anxiety, stress and depression.
  • The Liverpool Guild of Students is independent from the University and can offer support and advice for students who have experienced any form of domestic abuse.  Please click here to access the website for the Guild.
  • If you need to speak to someone urgently please contact the Wellbeing Advisors who can provide confidential support, advice and guidance. To contact them please call 0151 795 1000  between 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday or you can email on advice@liverpool.ac.uk
Support if you are a member of staff
  • You can complete a form on Report and Support to report your concerns. An Advisor will then contact you to make an appointment to offer you support and advice. All information will be treated sensitively and confidentially 
  • You can speak to your Team Leader / Line Manager to discuss the impact on you personally and professionally and agree any support you might need or ways to find an informal resolution. If the issue is about your line manager, then raise your concerns with their manager.
  • Staff Counselling is available through the Employee Assistance Programme, they provide qualified and experienced therapists who can offer you with a safe place to talk. For more information regarding our Employee Assistance Programme please click here.
  • The University has on-line resources including the Togetherall online platform or Silvercloud modules include stress, anxiety and depression
  • The Staff Equality Networks may be able to provide peer support. Please click here to contact them.
  • Seek advice from your Trade Union. 
  • If you need to speak to someone urgently please contact HR to speak to an Advisor. They can provide confidential support, advice and guidance. To contact them please call 0151 794 6771  between 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday or you can email hr@liverpool.ac.uk 
If you are Supporting Someone Else
 
If a member of the university community has spoken to you about their experience of domestic abuse, honour based violence or forced marriage or you suspect it may be happening to them, you can offer support in a number of ways:  
  • Listen to them. They trust you so provide a safe space and just listen, you don't need to provide the answers. You could work together and identify a few options and support them in any decision they make. However it is not your responsibility to solve their problem. 
  • Agree a code word or phrase with them so that you will know if they need help without alerting their partner or family. 
  • It can take a lot of courage to open up and share unpleasant experiences. Reassure them that you believe them, people rarely make up stories of domestic violence, forced marriage or honour based violence.
  • Encourage them to report the incident through Report and Support and to seek support, but don’t push them. It’s their choice, no matter what they decide to do.  They can report formally or choose to do this anonymously. 
  • Respect their privacy. If they have told you in confidence, then keep it confidential. However there may be times you do need to share the information particularly if you believe their safety is at risk. Try and get permission first and let them know who you will share the information with.
It may be very upsetting to hear what is happening or perhaps the perpetrator is a friend of yours, causing you conflicting feelings. As well as offering support, please seek support for yourself. If you are a student please see 'Support if you are a Student' section above. If you are a staff member please see 'Support if you are a member of staff' section above.

Staff Supporting A Student

You may be the first person a student turns to, to disclose their experience of domestic violence, forced marriage or honour based abuse. If you are their lecturer or academic advisor then you may have had a lot of contact with the student and they have chosen you because they feel safe to confide in you. 
 
You can just listen to the student, try not to ask too many questions and allow them to get upset. Reassure the student that you believe them and that they are not to blame for what happened. We don’t expect you to provide expert advice or long-term support, we will arrange this for the student. 

What to do next 
  • Give the student options of support (see 'Support if you are a student' section above). You can encourage them to report any incident through Report and Support. They can do this formally or choose to do this anonymously. 
  • The When to Refer guide provides additional information on domestic abuse, forced marriage or honour based violence please click here for more information 
  • The University Disclosure Guide gives information and advice to staff when a student has made a disclosure of domestic abuse, please click here for more information.
  • If you have any questions following a student disclosure please contact the Wellbeing Advisors and they can give you advice.  To contact them please call 0151 795 1000  between 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday or you can email on advice@liverpool.ac.uk 
There are also a number of local and national organisations that can offer support for people who have or who are experiencing domestic abuse, honour based abuse or forced marriage. Please see information in 'Additional Support' section. 
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There are two ways you can tell us what happened