Domestic abuse and sexual violence

Call 999 if you or someone you know is in immediate danger from domestic abuse or sexual violence.

Call 101 if you want to report something that's happened or if you want to seek advice.

Call the Independent Domestic Abuse Service (IDAS) on 03000 110 110 or the 24-hour national domestic abuse helpline on 0808 2000 247.

Visit the IDAS website for further help and support.
Who to contact

What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse is any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults aged 18 and over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender and sexuality.

In this definition, family members are defined as: mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sister and grandparents, whether directly related, in-laws or step-family.

Domestic abuse can take many forms; frequently checking your phone, withholding money and isolating you from family or friends are all behaviours that can have a real impact on psychological and emotional wellbeing.

Different types of abuse

Abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, economic or financial, as well controlling and coercive behaviour.

Physical abuse

Physical abuse includes:

  • pushing, throwing, kicking
  • slapping, grabbing, hitting, punching, beating, tripping, battering, bruising, choking, shaking
  • pinching, biting
  • holding, restraining, preventing you from leaving, locking you out of the home
  • depriving you of sleep, food, medication
  • breaking bones
  • assaulting with a weapon such as a knife or gun, an household object
  • burning

Emotional abuse

Emotional abuse includes:

  • threatening or intimidating you to gain compliance
  • destruction of your personal property and possessions, or threats to do so
  • punching walls, doors, violence to an object or pet, as a way of instilling fear of further violence
  • yelling or screaming, name calling, constant harassment
  • embarrassing, making fun of you, either at home or in public
  • Saying you are worthless, excessive possessiveness, isolates you from friends and family
  • constantly checking-up on you
  • blaming you for how they act or feel
  • making you feel there is no way out of the relationship

Verbal or non-verbal abuse is more subtle than physical abuse; while physical abuse might seem worse, the scars of verbal and emotional abuse are deep rooting. 

Sexual abuse

Sexual abuse includes:

  • sexual assault: forcing someone to participate in unwanted, unsafe, or degrading sexual activity
  • sexual harassment: ridiculing another person to try to limit their sexuality or reproductive choices
  • sexual exploitation (such as forcing someone to look at pornography, or forcing someone to participate in pornographic film-making)
  • using force, threats or intimidation to make you perform sexual acts

Sexual abuse often is linked to physical abuse; they may occur together or the sexual abuse may occur after a bout of physical abuse.

Economic or financial abuse

Economic or financial abuse includes:

  • withholding economic resources such as money, family allowance, credit cards etc
  • exploiting your resources for personal gain
  • withholding physical resources such as food, clothes, necessary medications, or shelter from a partner
  • preventing you from working or choosing an occupation.

Controlling behaviour

Controlling behaviour includes:

  • any act designed to make you subordinate and/or dependent, by isolating you from sources of support, exploiting your resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving you of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating your everyday behaviour.

Coercive behaviour

Coercive behaviour includes:

  • any act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that's used to harm, punish, or frighten you.

Independent Domestic Abuse Service (IDAS)

Barnsley Council works closely with our partner IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Service) to support residents in Barnsley who are suffering or have suffered from domestic abuse.

The partnership is passionate about preventing domestic abuse and encouraging healthy relationships through our #SpeakUp campaign, letting people in Barnsley know there's someone there for them. 

If you or someone you know is experiencing any form of domestic abuse, speak up - don’t suffer alone: call 03000 110 110.

IDAS can also provide support via a range of other ways including:

  • online video support sessions
  • WhatsApp messaging
  • live chat on their website
  • email

Find out more about how to get in touch with IDAS.

How businesses and organisations can help

Speak Up I'm Listening

Are you a front facing business that deals with members of the public? Would you know where to signpost them if you had concerns about their relationship or home life?

IDAS run training aimed at supporting businesses to spot the signs of domestic abuse.

Many people experiencing domestic abuse don’t always have the confidence to approach services for help - they’re often more likely to open up to someone they regularly see like their hairdressers, barbers or gym trainers.

To find out more call 03000 110 110.

Speak Together

Are you a local employer? Do you have training and policies in place to support employees with issues of domestic abuse and healthy relationships? Do you want to know more about how you can support your staff?

Call 03000 110 110 to find out more.

Speak to Me

Speak to Me is run in partnership with local medical practices and encourages people to speak to their GP practice if they have issues in their relationship and discusses how IDAS can help.

If you work in a GP practice that would like to be part of the scheme, please contact IDAS on 03000 110 110.