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Monday, November 21, 2016

TV presenter Charlie Webster supports launch of campaign against domestic violence

TV presenter Charlie Webster is supporting the launch of an exciting and innovative campaign against domestic violence by the Liberty Centre and West Lancashire Community Safety Partnership.

West Lancashire Borough Council, The West Lancashire Liberty Centre and Edge Hill Students Union have put together a new social media campaign entitled ‘Make the call. Don’t be a bystander.’ This will be officially launched on Friday 25 November at Briars Hall Hotel, Lathom. Charlie is a patron of the Liberty Centre and a passionate supporter of Women’s rights.

The Community Safety Partnership were asked to construct a campaign that encouraged people who had some awareness that a friend, relative or colleague was suffering from domestic violence, to get some support, advice or assistance. Officers approached the Liberty Centre as a partner to be involved in the campaign. The recommendation came out of a recent domestic homicide review after two former residents of West Lancashire were involved in a domestic homicide. Shortly after moving out of West Lancashire a young man murdered his girlfriend following an argument. The review involved numerous West Lancashire organisations due to the couple’s origins.

Using social media, the ‘Make the call. Don’t be a bystander’ campaign will be officially launched at the event at Briars Hall Hotel and we are aiming to bring the campaign to the attention of over 100,000 people on the day. Officers from Lancashire Constabulary, the Council and the Liberty Centre will discuss domestic abuse, a parent’s view of domestic homicide and the Don’t be a Bystander campaign. The Liberty Centre will officially launch the campaign via twitter at 12noon. Supporting information will also be available via the Liberty Centre (external link). The organisers are asking people to follow the Liberty Centre via twitter - @libertycentre1 - and re-tweet the message to as many people as possible. The Council will be supporting the campaign by retweeting through its account @westlancsbc.

Charlie Webster said: “As patron of the Liberty Centre I am fully aware how vital their service is. I am proud to be associated with this campaign and hope that my support can help the campaign reach a huge audience. Domestic homicides simply should not happen and the more work that can be done to prevent them the better.”

Councillor Kevin Wright, West Lancashire Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Health and Community Safety, said “The circumstances behind this campaign are truly tragic, but I am hugely impressed by the campaign and the potential audience for it is massive. My thanks go to all the people involved in this innovative campaign, which I am sure will help people get the right advice and support at a difficult time.”

Gwen Bleasdale, chairperson of the Liberty Centre, said: “Too often we stand by when someone we know or love is suffering from domestic abuse – either because we don’t know what to do, or we don’t want to interfere, or the person doesn’t want help at that stage. This campaign calls on people to take action, make the call and don’t by a bystander when they suspect domestic abuse. We are launching this campaign to save lives and to stop domestic abuse. We are very grateful to Charlie for supporting the campaign.”

Chief Inspector Jill Halliwell, from Lancashire Constabulary, said: “Lancashire Constabulary are fully supporting and proud to be associated with this campaign. Domestic violence is everybody’s responsibility and raising the awareness of this crime and its consequences throughout the population can only support the work done by the police and other agencies.”

Incidents of Domestic Abuse increase over the festive period and the Liberty Centre’s website provides information on not just this campaign, but other support and services that are available. There are also details of national helpline numbers as well.

Funding for this project was received from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw.