Guest speakers offer insight into Domestic Abuse

Guest speakers offer insight into Domestic Abuse

Working in partnership with South Ayrshire Violence Against Women, Ayrshire College hosted an event bringing local agencies together to improve awareness of support available for domestic abuse.

The discussion opened with a message from the Chair of South Ayrshire Violence against Women, Councillor Laura Brennan-Whitefield by highlighting new legislation in Scotland.

This was followed by a screening of the Scottish Government’s video highlighting the new Domestic Abuse Bill, which for the first time criminalises psychological domestic abuse.

A panel of guest speakers offered their insights into what can be done as employers in order to support staff with domestic abuse issues and held a question and answer session for the audience. The panel included:

Hazel Bingham – South Ayrshire Women’s Aid

Lindsey Eddleston – South Ayrshire Council

Lorraine Fleming – NHS Ayrshire and Arran

Davy Thompson – White Ribbon Scotland

Lisa Thomson – Police Scotland

Ayrshire College works with partners across Ayrshire to ensure staff and students are aware of gender-based violence and the support available, developing a whole-college approach through the Equally Safe action plan.

Sara Turkington, Equality & Inclusion Advisor at Ayrshire College said “It is really important as a College we continue to work with partners to hold events like this – we need to ensure that we provide support to students and staff who are, or have experienced domestic abuse.

“Having the opportunity to discuss this and learn from others is key. Domestic abuse is a pervasive issue that affects many people and as such, it is only through us all working together can we tackle it.”

The audience was made up of a wide range of practitioners and staff who were encouraged to discuss the way forward in providing a practical approach to supporting staff who may have experienced domestic abuse.

Sarah Shennan, Health Improvement Practitioner NHS Ayrshire & Arran said “Holding this event allowed us to open up the conversations and raise awareness of domestic abuse in all its forms. I hope participants left feeling inspired to continue these conversations in the workplace and in their communities and continue in the drive towards eradicating domestic abuse.”

31 May 2019

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