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Domestic Abuse support for LGBT victims in Essex

Safer Places has won an award to support LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) people who suffer from domestic abuse, across the whole of Essex.

The project has been set up to reach victims who have been largely hidden from domestic abuse services and it is important to the team at Safer Places that their services are available to everyone, including those who are LGBT.

Working with Outhouse East, the LGBT charity based in Colchester, the award will allow Safer Places to fund a specialist domestic abuse support worker, who will target support at the traditionally hard to reach LGBT community and ensure they are able to access the support available.

“Traditionally, the public think that domestic abuse is what happens to women, but it can affect everyone, including men and those who are LGBT, said Safer Places chief executive officer, Janet Dalrymple.

She added: “We undertook our own research with the Essex LGBT community to learn about their experiences of domestic abuse. And by speaking to over 100 people we discovered that all but one had either direct experience of domestic abuse or it had happened to a friend or a family member, and that is why this award is so important”.

Outhouse East centre manager, Corina Tilea said: “We are really excited to be working on this project with Safer Places, as the research highlights a real need for domestic abuse services to be targeted at this group of people”.

The new support worker will raise the awareness of domestic abuse within the LGBT community and support victims. In the future, results from the project will support the transformation of the Safer Places services so the charity can be a more inclusive to groups that have been underrepresented in the past.