By KLTV Newsdesk –
West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) has today announced that victims and survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence across West Yorkshire are set to receive enhanced levels of support following a significant cash boost.
Over £2m has been allocated to the Mayoral Combined Authority to increase the number of Independent Sexual Violence Advisors and Independent Domestic Violence Advisors.
The money will create over 25 full-time equivalent roles across West Yorkshire, with commitments from the Ministry of Justice until 2023.
WYCA says they will work to provide tailored and specialist assistance for those who have experienced domestic abuse and sexual violence.
Domestic abuse and sexual violence support services in the county are also receiving just over £350,000 of additional funding to help increase their capacity and respond to victim’s needs.
‘Developing Support Networks’
Speaking on the funding, Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire said: “Along with the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, I am passionate about developing the support networks available for all those suffering from domestic abuse and sexual violence.
“This disproportionately affects women and girls, but I welcome evidence that more male victims are coming forward.”
Ms Brabin added that tackling domestic abuse and sexual violence is one of her priorities as Mayor.
She said: “This extra funding means that those already embedded within our communities can continue to deliver an invaluable resource that supports victims and survivors, both emotionally and practically.
“Partnership working is crucial, and I am absolutely committed to this approach.”
The Crime Survey for England and Wales showed that an estimated 2.3 million adults aged 16 to 74 years experienced domestic abuse in the last year.
1 in 3 victims were men (757,000 relative to 1.6 million women).
Robert Balfour, chief executive of Survivors West Yorkshire, who provide free specialist counselling to male sexual violence survivors, said: “The support of the new mayor and Ministry of Justice is appreciated.
“We look forward to working with the Mayor and her Deputy Mayor for Policing to forge a new pioneering partnership landscape of support for all survivors of sexual violence across West Yorkshire.”
Basis Yorkshire is a Leeds based charity that works to end stigma, create safety and promote empowerment for: Sex workers living and/or working in Leeds (female including trans, indoor or on the street) and Young People (boys, girls, young women and young men) experiencing sexual exploitation.
Moya Woolven, Chief Executive of Basis Yorkshire, said: “Basis Yorkshire are delighted to receive funding for an Independent Domestic Violence Adviser which we applied for based on the issue being so prevalent among women we support.
“Adding this specialism to our team supporting women sex workers and those who are being (or have been) sexually exploited will enable us to provide a much-needed additional layer of support to women who are or have been victims of domestic abuse.”