DeafHope UK — confronting Domestic Abuse
SignHealth has established a new service called DeafHope UK. This is a service for Deaf women and their children who are experiencing, or are survivors of, domestic abuse.
DeafHope UK believes that Deaf women and children have the right to live in safety and to have a future without fear. We also believe society has a duty to recognize and defend this right.
We provide services to support Deaf women and children who are experiencing, or who are survivors of, domestic abuse. These include:
- Supporting Deaf women to make informed choices.
- Direct support in a crisis from a fully qualified IDVA worker (Independent Domestic Violence Advocate).
- Providing Deaf advocates to support women to access mainstream services if that is their choice.
- The direct service of a trained Deaf outreach worker.
- Survivors’ workshops and online forum and helpline.
- Referral to SignHealth’s specialist BSL therapy services.
- The Young DeafHope Outreach service for young people age 11–30.
- Advice and information.
Ellie is Deaf and recently made what she said was the “the hardest and bravest decision” of her life. No longer able to endure her husband’s terrifying physical and sexual abuse that she, her four-year-old daughter and baby, had been suffering, they fled the family home. They had no money and no one to turn to.
Thankfully Ellie knew about DeafHope and was able to make contact in the early hours of the morning. She was soon able to receive emergency support and could communicate with a professional in a language she understood – British Sign Language.
In the hours, days and weeks that followed we were able to help Ellie get medical support, to deal with various legal teams, and to equip the nearby refuge with the right equipment to make it accessible for a young deaf family. When the time came, we then supported Ellie through the court case. Read more.
DeafHope UK is offering protection
- By working to influence laws, policy and practice to ensure the needs of Deaf women and children experiencing abuse are recognized and fully met.
- By working in partnership with key national and local agencies to develop guidelines for best practice.
- By delivering specialist training programmes to front line staff of service providers.
- By raising awareness, both within the Deaf community and the wider public.
- By developing and delivering specialist education workshops for Deaf young people through our Young DeafHope project.
Download the DeafHope poster and put it up
What is Domestic Abuse
Power and Control Wheel
What is a Refuge?
DeafHope in the USA