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Domestic abuse prevention charity needs more funding

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THE budget for a charity that works to reform men who abuse their partners needs to be doubled, the manager of the service has warned.

Nigel Collier-Webb says that the current budget for the ADAPT Domestic Abuse Prevention programme is putting services under strain.

Increasing the funding by an extra £32,000 a year would, he says, help to cut waiting lists and allow the organisation to consider introducing a programme to work with female offenders.

It comes as the States police launch a two-week campaign against domestic abuse in which the force is promoting the international White Ribbon Campaign, which works around the world to end violence against women.

Nigel Collier-Webb, the manager of the ADAPT Domestic Abuse Prevention programme

Figures show that last year in Jersey domestic abuse accounted for 16 per cent of all recorded crime – double the rate of the UK.

Since its launch in 2007, 103 male abusers have completed the 30-week ADAPT course that aims to help them change their behaviour and safeguard women from attacks in the home.

Currently the programme only deals with male perpetrators of domestic violence.

But over the years although demand for the service has grown, the budget has not.

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Mr Collier-Webb said the service needs around £32,000 more in funding, which would double its annual budget to £64,000 a year.

'We have always been underfunded,' he said.

'We have received the same funding since we opened in 2007 but demand has grown.

'Finances are hard and we would like proper contracts for staff.

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'We have 12 staff but they are all working on a part-time basis.

'There is a waiting list and to cut that down we are looking to run two sessions a week like we did between 2013 and the start of this year.'

He added that they would also like to consider introducing a programme for female perpetrators but were unsure of how much it would cost.

'We are funded by the Building a Safer Society programme through the States,' he said.

'The cost of a women's programme would be significant.'

The charity, which takes the majority of its clients through Probation orders but does have some men who ask for help themselves, has received 45 inquiries so far this year and 11 men have completed the course.

  • Staff at States departments have been asked to wear a white ribbon and there will be presentations in schools.
  • A pop-up shop on King Street, in the old Sure building opposite Marks & Spencer, will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays for the next two weeks between 11 am and 2 pm and again from 4 pm until 7 pm on 3 December.

Mr Collier-Webb, who says problems with alcohol and abusive childhoods are common contributing factors to why men abuse, added that ADAPT has a 68 per cent success rate based on the number of those who re-offend.

Domestic abuse is a pattern of behaviour during which one person exercises control over another within an intimate or family relationship.

The abuse can take many forms including physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and financial.

Detective Inspector Mark Hafey, head of the public protection unit and who is co-ordinating the States police's campaign, said: 'There is absolutely no doubt that by agencies working together, sharing information and devising effective safeguarding plans for those who are deemed high risk we are making a significant positive difference to their lives.

'Domestic abuse is, however, still under reported and as such we urge any Islander who is suffering abuse to seek the support and guidance that is available.'

  • The ADAPT programme is based on the Duluth model of power and control.
  • It consists of five modules of six sessions and focuses on motivation and level of acceptance of abusive behaviour towards a spouse or partner.
  • Referrals are made through the ADAPT co-ordinator, who will assess each person’s suitability for the programme.
  • ADAPT is run through the Domestic Violence programme.
  • Common themes throughout all of the modules are issues around the use of power and control, partner blame, denial and minimisation, the use of power and control logs. .
  • The aim of the programme is not about fixing the relationship, but emphasises personal change and a way of helping you to think about why you abuse and the impact of abuse on others.

A MAN who slapped his partner and pushed her over a chair has said the ADAPT programme is helping him to address problems he has carried with him all his life.

Chris (not his real name) (50) has more than 100 previous convictions, including for assaults against men and women, and after he attacked his partner in their home while drunk.

He was sentenced to 12 months' probation for the assault and told to serve 30 weeks on the ADAPT course.

'I have been to prison in the past and that just made me angrier,' he said.

'This helps me address my problems.

'They teach you to have respect for women and respect for people in general.

'Before this I suppose I did not respect women, I took them for granted and I was very selfish.'

Chris says the attack on his partner was fuelled by alcohol, although he recognises it is not an excuse for his actions.

He said he had always been a drinker but his alcohol consumption had increased during the summer due to bouts of depression.

'I would drink to forget things,' he said.

'Programmes like ADAPT are great.

'Domestic violence happens a lot in Jersey, both ways, women against men too.'

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