St Leger Homes of Doncaster has confirmed that it has signed up to the Chartered Institute of Housing’s ‘Make A Stand’ pledge to support people experiencing domestic abuse.
The local housing provider, which manages over twenty thousand homes for Doncaster Council, has for many years offered practical support to people facing domestic abuse and remains committed to tackling this problem in Doncaster.
The ‘Make A Stand’ pledge has been developed nationally in partnership with Women’s Aid and the Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance and commits housing providers to undertake four key commitments:
1. Put in place and embed a policy to support residents who are affected by domestic abuse
2. Make information about national and local domestic abuse support services available on their website and in other appropriate places so that they are easily accessible for residents and staff
3. Put in place a HR policy, or amend an existing policy, to support members of staff who may be experiencing domestic abuse
4. Appoint a champion at a senior level in their organisation to own the activity they are doing to support people experiencing domestic abuse.
Paul Tanney, Chief Executive of St Leger Homes, said:
“We have signed the ‘Make A Stand’ pledge as we want to send out a strong message that domestic abuse is unacceptable in any form – and we want anyone experiencing abuse in our properties to know that we have in place support to ensure they will get the help they need.
“Domestic abuse can take many forms and can affect people from any background. We will always do everything we can to support people in this difficult situation – particularly in helping maintain tenancies, where that is appropriate.
“If you are experiencing domestic abuse, or if you want help to change your abusive behaviour, you can call the confidential domestic abuse helpline on 0800 4701 505 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The helpline is open from 9am to 10.30pm Monday to Friday, and all calls will be answered by experienced advisers who understand your situation, and who will be able to refer to the most appropriate service to get further help.
“You can also report domestic abuse by calling the police on 101 – remember, if you are at immediate risk of harm, you should always call 999.”
How Can St Leger Homes Help Those Facing Domestic Abuse:
We can help you:
•Remain in your current accommodation with support
•Access a private interview room with a free telephone
•Get in touch with partner organisations for specialist support
•Get advice on rent and housing benefits and debt
•By fitting extra security to your home under the Safe & Secure Scheme. (An assessment will be carried out by the Protecting Vulnerable People (PVP) unit or the Independent Domestic Violence Advisory (IDVA) service to check if and what additional security measures may be required)
•With housing support should you need to move from your current home – this may be in the form of the local domestic violence refuge or contact with our Home Options service in emergency situations
•With housing advice that may help you to remain in your current accommodation where you may be experiencing domestic abuse or sexual violence – if that is what you want to do
Frequently Asked Questions We Receive About Domestic Abuse:
If I leave my home what will happen?
If the person being violent to you is your partner it may be possible to reach a voluntary agreement whereby your partner leaves and agrees to you having sole tenancy or ownership of the property.
If a voluntary agreement is not possible it may be necessary to go to Court and ask the judge to award the home to you (and your children). A Solicitor, the CAB or St Leger Homes Home Options officers, can give you further advice on the options available to you.
If I lose the rights to my property will St Leger Homes Re-house me?
Under the Housing Act 1996 Part VII, (Homelessness) St Leger Homes has a duty to provide advice and assistance and if necessary temporary accommodation to persons who it is considered have suffered or are at risk of physical violence/abuse.
A Home Options officer will consider your individual circumstances and provide you with the appropriate confidential advice and assistance.
Under the Homelessness Legislation, a person must do everything reasonably possible to retain their property. Consequently, you should not voluntarily surrender your tenancy, or relinquish your rights of occupancy until a decision has been reached on your homeless application as it could seriously jeopardise any application you make to St Leger Homes under the homeless persons legislation if you do.
The Police can arrange to place a ‘TAG’ on a victims address on the Police National Computer so they know the situation when the victim calls them.