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Bedfordshire launch Male-VAWG blog

In a bid to empower victims and encourage others to speak out, the force has created a blog where VAWG victims can share their stories.

The MVAWG initiative will be a series of real life blogs available on the force’s website - and has been created to raise awareness of the crimes and the consequent impact on a victim’s life. 

Although VAWG is now a Home Office-defined term, Bedfordshire has recognised that the majority of these offences are committed by male perpetrators. 

The blog is designed to give victims a platform, to raise awareness and to encourage others to challenge behaviour. Contributors will have the option to be anonymised. 

The first post has been written by an officer who was physically and mentally abused by her ex-partner while she was pregnant. 

“By sharing my story, I hope I can give at least one person the confidence to come forward. The journey isn’t easy, but you will be believed and there is support available,” she said.

“There are people who will do everything to protect your corner.

“A few years later, I bumped into one of his friends at the time. It scared me as I didn’t know how he would react, but he came up to me and apologised. He apologised for never questioning his mate’s behaviour or the way he spoke to me.

“For not noticing that when he came round, I was never allowed to be involved in the food plans, or I was never in the same room. But now is the time to start challenging behaviours, especially your mates.”

The initiative sits alongside others that the force are running in this area, including training for officers and licensed premises under Project Firefly. 

Detective Chief Superintendent Dee Perkins, the force’s lead for male violence against women and girls, said: “We are working to create a safer environment for women and girls across Bedfordshire, and as part of that work we are creating a safe space for women’s voices to be heard.

“As these survivors bravely speak out, we must all do more to challenge these attitudes and behaviour, and we are working on a number of different project across the county to eradicate them.

“Bedfordshire Police has a significant focus on targeting perpetrators, and we will be looking to hold people engaging in this abhorrent behaviour accountable and take police action where we can.

“We are working with a number of partners, and are committed to earning the public’s trust that we understand these issues and are committed to getting our response right.”

You can read the first post here.


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