Tayside Police and its partners have launched Operation Lynchpin, an initiative that runs from now, over the festive season and through January, with the aim of tackling domestic abuse in all its forms.
Now in its fifth year, Operation Lynchpin focuses attention on the perpetrators of domestic abuse, as well as making sure that the right support is provided to victims.
While domestic abuse is seen as completely abhorrent by the law abiding majority, it is all too common within Scottish society and has a dreadful impact on its victims.
That impact comes in many guises, be it physical, emotional or financial – or very often a combination of all of those – and can have irretrievable consequences.
Detective Inspector Jim Smith said: “Tayside Police and partners maintain a focus on this issue throughout the year but Lynchpin provides us with a platform to highlight this issue to the public and shine a light on domestic abuse at a time of year when we generally see a rise in such incidents.
“During the campaign every officer will take every opportunity to expose, investigate, record and tackle domestic abuse in whatever form it takes. We want to send a very clear message to that small but nonetheless significant number of people who wrongly believe that violence, including domestic abuse, is normal.
“It is not, and it will not be tolerated. People who engage in domestic abuse will be arrested and treated as the violent criminal they expose themselves to be.”
The desire to dominate or control a partner is rarely a one-off event, with research continuing to show that individuals are frequently subjected to numerous incidents before seeking help and support, initially from the police and then from other support networks.
Living in an environment of domestic abuse exposes children and other family members to harm. Aside from the physical and emotional danger, youngsters in their tender years of development can be left with the belief that such behaviour is normal and this is something they carry into their adult life.
Help is available
Anyone reporting an incident can be assured that it will be thoroughly and sensitively investigated and partner agencies are readily available to offer support and assist in dismantling this cycle of behaviour.
Operation Lynchpin runs until January 25, and is supported by the Violence Against Women Partnerships (in Dundee, Angus, and Perth and Kinross), and partners such as Barnardos, Women’s Aid, Action for Children, Victim Support, the Rape and Sexual Abuse Counselling service (RASAC), the White Ribbon Scotland Campaign and the Community Justice Authority, as well as the three local authorities.
Victims of domestic abuse, female and male, can contact the Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline 0800 027 1234 (24 hours) to access support or for referrals to local support providers.
For perpetrators of domestic abuse, there is a confidential service offered by the Respect Helpline 0808 802 4040.