What is domestic abuse?

Domestic abuse includes any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse. The abuse can be psychological, physical, social, financial, or emotional.

Domestic abuse can happen between two people who are or were intimate partners or family members, regardless of their gender or sexuality. If you are in fear of a partner, ex-partner or member of your family, you might be experiencing domestic abuse.

Do they often...

  • Call you names and make you feel bad about yourself?
  • Make you afraid by threatening you or your children?
  • Behave violently towards you?
  • Stop you seeing your friends or family?
  • Keep you without money?
  • Harm you or make you feel you could be seriously harmed?

If the answer to some of these questions is yes you might be experiencing domestic abuse.

Get help now

Contact our Housing Needs Team on 01246 242424 or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You can contact a local domestic abuse specialist service, The Elm Foundation. The service is available to men and women over 16 years of age. They offer a wide range of services such as advocacy, safety planning, peer support, safety measures in the home, children’s therapeutic interventions and more. They also offer a programme for perpetrators of domestic abuse who want help in changing their behaviour. To access all these services call 0800 0198 668 or visit www.theelmfoundation.org.uk

Contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 if you’re a woman experiencing domestic abuse. You can talk confidentially to someone about your situation and to find out what your options are which includes referrals to refuge accommodation where you will be safe.

If you are a man experiencing domestic abuse you can contact the Men’s Advice Line online or by telephone on 0800 0198 668.

If you are in a same-sex relationship you can call the National LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline by telephoning 0800 999 5428. Their website is full of information that can help.

Call the Samaritans on 116 123 if you feel in despair and want someone to listen to you and provide emotional support.

If you’re in immediate danger

Call the police on 999 if:

  • your personal safety is threatened
  • you are at risk of assault or injury
  • in an emergency

Leaving home immediately

If you feel you are at risk of harm and have to leave home straight away contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline or by telephone on 0808 2000 247 and they will help to find you accommodation where you will be safe. If it is safe to do so you could stay with friends or relatives while you think about what to do next. In many cases this is the most appropriate option especially if you have support from family and friends. If you’re an adult leaving domestic abuse you could try to find a place in a refuge.

The Elm Foundation can help you with this. Take some essentials with you such as a change of clothes, toiletries and any medication you need to take regularly. Try to bring important items such as your passport, bank and credit cards and mobile phone. Don’t make a decision to give up your home permanently until you have spoken to an adviser and considered all your options.

Use Shelter’s directory to find a Shelter advice centre or Citizens Advice in your area.

Get homelessness help from us

You can apply to our housing solutions team as a homeless person if you can’t stay in your home. We have to give you advice about finding somewhere to live. Some people are entitled to emergency accommodation. If we have a duty to find you somewhere to live you will be asked to provide details of your situation. You may be asked for supporting evidence, which could include details and dates of incidents. You can take a friend or an adviser with you for support.

Get advice immediately if we or your landlord says it won’t help you because it believes it was reasonable for you to
stay in your home. You could challenge its decision. Contact the Derbyshire Law Centre online or by telephone on 01246 550674.

For further advice go to the Shelter website.

To check if you can get legal aid go to the GOV.UK website or Contact Civil Legal Advice on 0345 345 4 345.

Help from social services

Some people may be entitled to help from Derbyshire County Council’s social services department.
Social services might be able to help if you:

  • are elderly
  • have children living with you
  • are under the age of 18
  • have left care (or about to do so)
  • are in poor health
  • have a physical or learning disability

There are no rules about the kind of help social services have to provide. Visit Call Derbyshire’s website or call them on 01629 533190.


Refuges for women

Women experiencing domestic abuse may be able to stay in specialist refuge accommodation. Some refuges are specifically for women from certain backgrounds, such as Irish or Asian women. Staff at refuges can give you advice about your situation and will support you in finding permanent accommodation where it is safe. They will also help you to apply to the councils Housing Register which in this councils case is via Bolsover Homes.

You can contact them on 01246 242424 (Monday to Friday 8am - 5pm).

Contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 for more information about refuges. The 24hr freephone helpline (run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge) is available on 0808 2000 247 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


Advice for men

If you are a man who has to leave home because of domestic abuse, contact the Housing Needs Team on 01246 242424. There is limited specialist housing for men experiencing domestic abuse
but you can get information from the Men’s Advice Line online, or call 0800 0198 668, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or you can contact The Elm Foundation


Help for children and young people

If you or someone else in your family is being hurt at home, you may not be sure what you can do about it. Domestic abuse is not your fault and you won’t get into trouble for telling someone about it. The first thing is to tell someone else about what is happening to you. You can tell a teacher, a neighbour, a friend or a friend’s parent. You can call Childline on 0800 1111 for free. They won’t tell anyone else you are calling unless you are in immediate danger.

They can tell you about places where you can get help. Find out more from The Hideout about children and young people and domestic abuse and violence.

Get more help

If you need more help visit the Shelter advice line online or telephone 0808 800 4444.




 01246 242424
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