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Domestic Violence

What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse is an incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening, degrading and violent behaviour, including sexual violence, in the majority of cases by a partner or ex-partner, but also by a family member or carer. It is very common. In the vast majority of cases it is experienced by women and is perpetrated by men.

Domestic abuse can include, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Coercive control (a pattern of intimidation, degradation, isolation and control with the use or threat of physical or sexual violence)
  • Psychological and/or emotional abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Financial abuse
  • Harassment
  • Stalking
  • Online or digital abuse

Useful Information

Devon & Cornwall Police

  • Non emergency – 08452 777444
  • Emergency – 999

Victim Support – South West Regional Office

  • 0845 056 7999

Cornwall Domestic Violence Outreach Service

  • 01736 759 687

Elderly Abuse Response Line

  • 0808 808 8141

Honour Network Helpline

  • 0800 5999 2478

Broken Rainbow (gay, bisexual, transgender DV helpline)

  • 0800 5875 247


Cornwall Women’s Refuge Trust (24 hour helpline)

  • 01872 225 629

West Cornwal Women’s Aid Community Services, Penzance

  • 01736 367 543

Women’s Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre (Cornwall)

  • 01208 77099


Men’s Advice Line (confidential helpline for all men experiencing domestic violence)

  • 0808 801 0327

Respect (support for men who want to stop their violent behaviour

  • 0845 122 8609

Information for Children Linked to and Experiencing Abusive Relationships (CLEAR)

Clear is a registered charity offering a unique child centered therapeutic service based in Cornwall that can work with Children & Young People (CYP) between the ages of 3-18 years who have been traumatised by either a direct experience or witnessing sexual, psychological or emotionally abusive relationships.


Kooth (free online advice service for 11-25 year olds

Childline  – 0800 11 11 11


Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

Your healthcare professional is obliged under law to report female genital mutilation (FGM) in a girl under the age of 18.  This is no different from any other obligation on healthcare professionals to report abuse against children.  FGM is child abuse so the healthcare professional must make a report to the Police.

If a healthcare professional finds that a girl has had FGM, they will tell you they are going to make a report and they will discuss what this means for you.  They may speak further with you depending on the circumstances.

When the Police receive this information, they will speak with the NHS and children’s services professionals to determine what should be done, given the circumstances of the individual case.

Please ask questions and let your healthcare professional know if you require support or translation from an independent interpreter.

Helpful websites:

Daughters of Eve