Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Warned: Taking Out Frustrations During the Euros Won't Be Tolerated

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Home Breaking Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Warned: Taking Out Frustrations During the Euros Won’t Be Tolerated

Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Warned: Taking Out Frustrations During the Euros Won’t Be Tolerated

As the excitement and emotions of the Euros grip the nation, Wiltshire Police has issued a stern warning that domestic abuse will not be tolerated, regardless of how well or poorly any team performs.

For many fans, watching matches, enjoying a drink, and cheering on their team will be all about having fun. However, for some, the heightened emotions and increased alcohol consumption can lead to violence and fear, particularly affecting those at home.

Detective Chief Inspector Lucy Thorne, lead for Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) in Wiltshire Police, highlighted the force’s commitment to tackling domestic abuse, especially during major football tournaments like the Euros.

“Football brings people together in their desire to see their team succeed,” Thorne said. “But sadly, what’s often unseen and away from the pitch, is the increase of domestic abuse offences that are reported during football tournaments.”

She emphasized that while domestic abuse is a priority for the police all year round, there is a noticeable spike in incidents during major football events. “We want everyone to enjoy the football, but we will not stand by while people are abused at home or while out for the night. All too often we see a passion for football turn to aggression towards the main women and girls in their lives.”

Wiltshire Police anticipates that licensed premises across the county will be very busy during the Euros. Additional officers will patrol busy night-time economy (NTE) hotspots to take swift action against those looking to cause harm or nuisance.

Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Wilkinson urged everyone to support their team responsibly. “The Euros should be an opportunity for us to all come together and support our team. However, reports of domestic abuse and violence in the UK surge during major football competitions – with research also showing it’s often fuelled by excessive alcohol consumption.”

He added that support is available for both victims and perpetrators of domestic abuse. “Specialist support is available to perpetrators to break the cycle of abuse and change their behaviour before they cause further harm, as well as victim support services commissioned by my office to support those affected by domestic abuse. This support can be accessed without having to make a report to the police, and if you’re worried about a colleague, friend or loved one you are able to seek advice on their behalf.”

Claire Marshall, CEO of Fearfree, an organization working with victims of domestic abuse and perpetrators, also stressed the importance of seeking help. “The Euros are a fantastic opportunity for families to have fun together, but sadly for some, there is an increased risk of violence and abuse. There is no excuse for abuse, if your behaviour is harming your loved ones, get help to change.”

Fearfree offers free, non-judgemental Behaviour Change courses, including options for men or women only and a course for the Armed Forces community. “We know it is hard to ask for help, but it is a crucial step towards keeping your family safe,” Marshall said.

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