Help for those suffering domestic abuse during the lockdown

Domestic abuse does not stop during the coronavirus lockdown.

It increases.

If you are suffering from domestic abuse and need to leave your home to escape abuse the government’s household isolation guidance does not apply.

And always remember that if you are in immediate danger call 999 and ask for the police.

If you are in danger and unable to talk on the phone, dial 999, listen to the questions from the operator and respond by coughing or tapping the handset if you can. Then follow the instructions depending on whether you are calling from a mobile or a landline.

If prompted, press 55 to Make Yourself Heard – this will transfer your call to the police.

Pressing 55 only works on mobiles and does not allow police to track your location.

East London Domestic Abuse Resources

The main government Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for victims of domestic abuse site has a range of advice and signposts to resources.

Hackney Council Domestic Abuse Resources

To find out about domestic violence and sexual violence support provided by Hackney Council click here.

Newham Council Domestic Abuse Resources

You can find out about reporting domestic violence and where to get help in Newham if you are suffering abuse here.

National Domestic Abuse Resources

Refuge runs the National Domestic Abuse Helpline, which you can call for free, and in confidence, 24 hours a day on 0808 2000 247.

Women’s Aid has a Domestic Abuse Directory if you want to find help in your area.

Domestic abuse support for ethnic minorities

Imkaan is a women’s organisation addressing violence against black and minority women and girls.

Southall Black Sisters offer specialist support, advocacy and information to Asian and Afro-Caribbean women suffering abuse.

Tower Hamlets Council Domestic Abuse Resources

Tower Hamlets Council has information about domestic abuse in all its forms including trafficking, honours based abuse, stalking and harassment and forced marriage on this page.

In Tower Hamlets the Independent Domestic Violence Advocates (IDVA) and Hate Crime Casework service are still available. But because of the government guidelines around COVID-19, the drop-in service at the Shadwell Centre will not be available, neither will the Domestic Abuse One Stop Shop.

Tower Hamlets VAWG Team duty line for signposting professionals and victims onto specialist VAWG services – 0800 279 5434 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm or

If you are experiencing domestic or ‘honour’ based abuse and would like emotional or practical support over the telephone, there are several options:

Legal advice relating to domestic abuse and family law, such as non-molestation orders, child arrangements, or divorce – Bowling & Co solicitors: / 020 8221 8000 and in case of emergencies 07464 925 083

Tower Hamlets Housing Options Service Team (HOST) will no longer have a drop in service. For those at risk of homelessness contact HOST on 020 7364 7474, Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. After 5pm call their emergency line on 020 7364 4079

  • Adult Safeguarding Team – 020 7364 5005
  • Children Safeguarding Team – 020 7364 3444

If you require information or advice about a court related case, please contact the Police Officer in charge or your IDVA/Support Worker.

Victims of sexual assault

If you are a girl (aged 14+) or woman and have been a victim of sexual assault, you can contact Rape Crisis 0808 802 9999 between 12pm-2.30pm and 7pm-9.30pm every day.

Sex workers outreach

Beyond the Streets, who provide outreach support to women involved in prostitution continue to support women via telephone and can be contacted on 0800 133 7870 or email on

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

Women’s Health and Family Service run the Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Engagement Service. They continue to offer support to women by telephone and can be contacted on 020 7377 872 Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.

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