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Domestic abuse

Domestic abuse can affect anyone regardless of age, sexuality and gender. This page provides further information on where to find help, what is domestic abuse and other useful information.


If you are in immediate danger please call 999.

Harbour Support Services continue to support those affected by domestic abuse throughout the coronavirus outbreak. Services are still open and able to support people in refuges, through telephone and video support sessions.

Contact Harbour on 03000 202 525 or There is also help at Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for victims of domestic abuse.

Where can I find help and support? 

There are organisations within County Durham that can help and support you or someone you know regardless of gender and sexuality. See Domestic abuse - help and support for further information.

If you do not think you are a victim of domestic abuse but are concerned about conflict/arguments in your relationship (whether you are together or separated) and the impact this may have on your child, the 'Relationships Matter' programme can give you free support and space to talk. 

The programme is available to you if one parent lives in the North East region and you have at least one child aged 0-18 years (or 25 years if your child has a disability) or are expecting your first child . To take part please speak with a professional you may already be working with, such as your health visitor, school or nursery, or call our First Contact Service on 03000 267 979.

What is domestic abuse?

There are lots of different signs of domestic abuse many of which people don't realise. See the What is domestic abuse? page for details.

Domestic abuse isn't just about individual incidents but also the repeat nature of these and how they can get worse.

How do I cover my tracks online?

There are steps you can take to make sure your recent browsing history is not available for others to see. See Domestic abuse - cover your tracks online.

Domestic abuse campaigns

We are involved in various campaigns targeting different issues. 

Here we identify the most recent campaign targeted at raising awareness of domestic abuse. See Domestic abuse campaigns for further information.

Clare's Law - the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme

The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme, known as Clare's Law gives you a formal mechanism to make inquiries:

  • if you are concerned that your partner may pose a risk to you
  • if you're concerned that the partner of a member of your family or a friend may pose a risk to that individual.

The scheme allows the police to disclose information about a partner's previous history of domestic violence or violent acts. To find out more about Clare's Law and information on how to make an application visit Clare's Law - the domestic violence disclosure scheme.

Guidance for professionals working with victims of domestic violence

Guidance on the domestic abuse referral process can be found within the County Durham and Darlington Multi Agency Domestic Violence and Abuse Procedural Flow Chart at County Durham Partnership: plans and strategies.

A strategy to tackle domestic abuse

Tackling domestic abuse is a key priority of the Safe Durham Partnership, of which we are a member. The Safe Durham Partnership have published a strategy to tackle domestic abuse in County Durham. See A strategy to tackle domestic abuse and sexual violence for details.

Read about our objectives in terms of reducing domestic abuse, and how we aim to achieve these in our  Icon for pdf Domestic abuse Plan on a Page (PDF, 608.3kb) .

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