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Mens Refuge

Published: 13/06/2016

The Domestic Abuse Safety Unit (DASU) in Flintshire has recently opened the doors to the first refuge in North Wales specifically for men experiencing domestic abuse. DASU has worked closely with Wales and West Housing Association and Flintshire County Council who have provided the property and the funding for the project. DASU has many years’ experience providing specialist support services to survivors of physical, emotional, financial and sexual domestic abuse, supporting survivors since 1989. The partners have come together to develop this important project in direct response to the feedback from men experiencing domestic abuse. The development of a refuge will fill a gap in provision, increase options and improve the safety and well-being of males in the area. With DASU already successfully managing a refuge for women, when the organisation approached Flintshire County Council and Wales & West Housing with the suggestion of opening a men’s refuge, there was a positive and proactive response from all concerned. As well as safe accommodation, men will also be able to link into the many support services offered at the DASU domestic abuse one stop shop such as legal advice, specialist counselling and therapeutic group work. Flintshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Councillor Helen Brown, said: Flintshire County Council continues to be strong in its stance that abuse and domestic abuse, against either men or women, is wrong and must be tackled. We believe that everyone has the right to live in safety and free from fear. Anne Hinchey, Chief Executive of Wales & West Housing, said: “We are only too keen to help support those in need of refuge. It is important to recognise that men are also victims of domestic abuse and we are proud to be working in partnership with Flintshire County Council and DASU to help make a positive difference to their lives.” Carl Sargeant, Assembly Member for Alyn and Deeside, is a long time campaigner against domestic abuse and is once more the minister in charge of this issue as part of his new role as Cabinet Secretary for Children and Communities. He said: “It’s wonderful to see North Wales leading the way with the first refuge in the region for men suffering domestic abuse. I’m delighted at Flintshire County Council, Wales and West Housing Association and DASU’s proactive approach to filling this need. “I know from working with DASU over the years that they will make a real and positive difference to so many men who need their expert help and support. Domestic abuse can affect anyone and it’s fantastic to know there is practical help in Flintshire now for victims of both sexes.” To access the refuge or obtain free and confidential advice and assistance if you are a victim of domestic abuse please call the All Wales Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence Advice Line 0808 8010 800 or Mankind Initiative 01823 334244.  From the left: Sian Hughes - DASU Finance, Funding & Monitoring Officer, Lisa Pearson - FCC Contract & Reviewing Officer, Cllr Aaron Shotton - Leader of Council, Cllr Helen Brown - Cabinet Member for Housing, Sandra Vedovotto - DASU Project Manager, Becky Tullett, FCC Contract & Reviewing Officer, Will Brooks - WWHA Housing Officer, Deb Ward - Housing Manager, Emma Glover - DASU Independent Domestic Violence Advisor