Residents and communities are being asked for their views on a draft Sussex-wide Domestic Abuse Accommodation and Support strategy, which will help shape how £3.1 million funding will be invested in services.
The draft joint strategy has been developed by West and East Sussex County Councils and Brighton and Hove City Council.
The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 requires local authorities to publish a strategy setting out how they will protect and assist survivors of domestic abuse in safe accommodation.
Alongside the strategy, the three councils have been awarded just over £3.1 million of government funding, which will go towards implementing the strategy across Sussex when it is finalised.
More than 70 stakeholders, professionals, service providers and domestic abuse survivors took part in engagement meetings to inform the draft strategy.
This work helped all parties to understand what was currently available to victims and survivors of domestic abuse and to identify gaps and opportunities for improving the offer.
Amanda Jupp, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Adults’ Services, said: “Since the pandemic began last year, the plight of domestic abuse has become more and more prominent as people in abusive relationships were stuck with their abusers for prolonged periods of time, potentially unable to get help from support groups or friends and family members.
“This draft strategy takes much learning from the pandemic and will help to guide us, as well as our fellow Sussex authorities, in giving the right support when it is needed as we move forward in these uncertain times.
“We believe the proposed strategy will make a real difference to the lives of survivors and their children, and we would really like the support of our residents in helping to inform what the strategy should look like. What you tell us will help us to get it right and make the most of the additional funding that is being provided.”
The strategy will be reviewed and refreshed every three years in response to the changing needs of victims and survivors of domestic violence and abuse.
You can complete the online survey by visiting yourvoice.westsussex.gov.uk. The consultation closes on Sunday 19 December 2021.
The strategy will then be updated based on people’s comments ready for the final version to be published in January 2022.
If you require any of the information for the draft Domestic Abuse Accommodation and Support Strategy in an alternative format, please call 0330 222 4248 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are deaf or hard of hearing and have an NGT texting app installed on your computer, laptop or smartphone, you can contact 18001 0330 222 4248.