Ian McNicholl, a domestic abuse survivor, found out through making a freedom information request to Sussex Police that in 2020 4,978 men across Sussex reported they had been victims of domestic abuse.
This figure is 25 per cent of all victims in 2020 and marks a rise of nearly 3,000 men compared to 2014 when the total stood at 1,945.
Covid-19 means people have been stuck at home due to restrictions. However, there are only 40 ‘safe spaces’ for men and their children to escape to with many parts of the UK having no appropriate places at all for male victims to go.
Ian said he requested the information to ‘encourage more males across Sussex to come forward’ because the figures shows many men are ‘suffering behind their front door’.
A report from the Home Office said male victims are nearly three times more likely not to tell anyone about the abuse they’re suffering from and only 26.1 per cent of male victims will tell the police.
Ian says he wants to highlight to domestic abuse professionals across Sussex who are working for councils/the police/health service just how many males are suffering. He said professionals must address the needs of male victims and make sure their services are male victim friendly and gender inclusive.
Ian said these figures will also encourage friends, family and work colleagues to recognise males are victims of domestic abuse too.
He said, “These figures show that domestic abuse has no prejudice as there are males right across Sussex who have come forward and told the police.
“If you are experiencing domestic abuse or suffering from the symptoms of domestic abuse, please call the police or speak with friends and/or family and get the help you need.
“I can assure you that the action you take today will be life changing, if could even be lifesaving.”
If you’ve been the victim of domestic abuse, or are concerned for someone who is, you can report this to Sussex Police online or by calling 101.