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Last Updated: Monday, 13 February 2006, 13:21 GMT
Advert aids abuse helpline calls
Domestic abuse advert
The advert led to an increase in domestic abuse helpline calls
A television and radio campaign to raise awareness of domestic abuse has been hailed a success after a rise in the number of victims seeking help.

The Scottish Executive's campaign, launched on Boxing Day last year, led to 3,589 calls to the helpline - a 21% rise on the same period during 2004/05.

The adverts depicted the problem of psychological abuse.

Actress Daniela Nardini, who narrated the adverts, urged more abuse victims to come forward.

It is estimated that about 100,000 children and young people are living with domestic abuse in Scotland.

Daniela Nardini
The campaign shows how devastating psychological abuse can be
Daniela Nardini

The television advert highlighted the effects of psychological abuse by showing a woman going about her daily routine being constantly ground down by her partner's behaviour.

Nardini said the issue of respect was at the heart of the awareness drive.

"We can all understand what it must be like to live in constant fear or feeling controlled by others," she said.

"We all deserve healthy, positive relationships, where we can share values, be our own people in relationships built on foundations of trust, support and love.

Emotional abuse

"The advertising campaign shows just how devastating psychological abuse can be and I don't think anyone should ever experience this.

"It's sad to know that women are suffering in this way but I'm really encouraged that through these adverts, people are coming forward for support and advice. I really hope they continue to contact the helpline."

The Scottish Domestic Abuse Helpline co-ordinator Liz Kelly said more than half of the calls received over the six-week period mentioned the television and radio campaign.

"A vast amount of the callers mentioned the advert, as for many, it was the first time they realised that the abuse they were experiencing at home, was in fact domestic abuse," she said.

"Those experiencing physical violence often recognise this as domestic abuse, but when it is psychological abuse, many do not identify what is happening to them and so don't know or feel they can ask for help.

"It's more difficult because there are no bruises or injuries on show. "

The statistics were published a day before Valentine's Day as a reminder that while many couples celebrate loving relationships others suffer domestic abuse.

Victims of domestic abuse can contact the helpline on 0800 027 1234.

Festive warning on domestic abuse
25 Dec 05 |  Scotland
'Seismic shift' needed over abuse
25 Nov 05 |  Scotland
More action urged on abuse toll
15 Nov 05 |  Scotland


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