The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex is investing in training to help the community to spot the signs of domestic abuse taking place around them.
Free training is being offered across the county to ensure everyone is equipped to respond appropriately and effectively if they suspect someone is a victim of domestic abuse or if someone reveals they are suffering abuse.
The J9 Domestic Abuse initiative was named in memory of Janine Mundy who was killed by her estranged husband while on police bail and set up by her family and local police in Cornwall.
In 2012, Epping Forest District Council began delivering the scheme locally. In response, Safer Places, the domestic violence support service covering the area at that time, saw a 125 per cent increase in referrals from victims in that area.
Roger Hirst, the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex contributed £20,000 towards the roll-out of the scheme to the rest of the county from the 2019/2020 Community Safety Fund.
Trainer and consultant Jo Majauskis said: “Training has been delivered to multi agencies and we estimate that we have more than 2,000 trained J9 champions across the county. Following the success in Essex, the J9 scheme continues to roll out and has received interest from other counties, crossing borders into Hertfordshire and Barking and Dagenham.”
Under the scheme –
* staff in all Job Centres in Essex have received training
* Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow became the first J9 hospital in Essex. Further funding means this will expand to all Essex hospitals
* training has been delivered to safeguarding leads and educators in schools across three districts
* a choreographer developed a piece of dance theatre about domestic abuse. After J9 training, they have since trained staff at every theatre they have performed at to make them J9 venues
Domestic abuse community awareness training is given around awareness of domestic abuse, including signs of abuse, nature of abuse, support agencies and referral routes.
The idea is for the training to improve engagement with victims, improve disclosure rates and provide timely support to victims that safeguards them and their families from harm.
Jo said: “J9 has been generously funded by various people, including the High Sheriff and the Community Safety Partnerships across Essex. Most recently, match funding from Essex County Council’s Public Health Team and the PFCC has enabled us to roll the training out further.
“Their generosity is allowing us to roll out 72 sessions of community training across the county and deliver six dedicated sessions for healthcare professionals in every hospital in Essex.”
J9 delegates are given access to a handbook with practical information and stickers and lanyard to identify them as a “safe” person to disclose to.
Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “Breaking the cycle of domestic abuse is one of the priorities in our Police and Crime Plan. Working together with partners across the county, our objective is to help those who suffer in silence and reduce the impact on children and families. The J9 training helps people recognise the signs and indicators of domestic abuse and gives victims confidence that they will get the help and support they need. It really is a great initiative and one that we are proud to support.”
To book a community J9 training session with your organisation, contact Jo Majauskis on 07871 263636 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
If your enquiry relates to operational policing or a crime please contact Essex Police here