One in five domestic abuse victims in South Yorkshire are men, new figures show
One in five reports of domestic abuse in South Yorkshire last year were from men, a Freedom of Information Act request has found.
In 2019, South Yorkshire Police received 2,100 reports of domestic abuse from men, compared with 6,951 from women.
The information was requested by domestic abuse survivor Ian McNicholl, who wants more men to know they are not the only ones suffering – a common reason why many do not come forward.
He said: “I never came forward to the police when I was experiencing abuse and it nearly cost me my life.
“Please don’t be like me, please call the police or speak with friends or family and get the help you need. I can assure you that the action you take today will be life-changing, it could even be lifesaving.”
Ian, who is 58 and from East Yorkshire, added that the impact of coronavirus will mean many men spending more time with their abuser - a problem compounded by the fact there are just 40 ‘safe spaces’ in the entire country for men and their children to escape to.
And he also urged agencies that help domestic violence victims in South Yorkshire to undertake an urgent review of their internal policies and procedures to ensure that they are male victim friendly.
He said: “The number of men coming forward to the police sends a clear message that domestic abuse is a crime that affects both men and women.
“It is vital that councils, the Police and Crime Commissioner, and partners in health and housing fund local services to support them as they rightly do female victims.
“It is also important that there are more awareness campaigns to encourage men to come forward and also to change society’s view that men cannot be victims of domestic abuse.”
Figures from the Home Office show that male victims are less likely to tell the police or anyone else about their abuse, while statistics from the Office of National Statistics show that male victims are far less likely to see what happened to them as domestic abuse.