YAS Supports 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence
23 November 2023
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Saturday 25 November 2023 marks the start of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence which runs until 10 December.
As part of ‘16 Days of Activism’ we will be focusing on domestic abuse which effects all people regardless of sex, gender, sexuality, class and wealth etc. However, it is accepted that this is a gender-based crime which is disproportionately experienced by women. One in four women will experience some form of domestic abuse in their lifetime. Two women a week are killed by a current or ex-partner.
Between October 2022 and September 2023, we made 2,168 safeguarding referrals where domestic abuse was identified.
If you require support, please visit Refuge, the free 24-hour national domestic abuse helpline.
We have introduced a number of initiatives to improve our response to patients and staff experiencing domestic abuse:
- We have a new role of Specialist Domestic Abuse Practitioner (SDAP) in our Safeguarding Team. Our practitioner is an accredited Independent Domestic Violence Advocate (IDVA) and an Independent Sexual Violence Advocate. We are proud to be the first ambulance service in the country to employee an IDVA.
- We have developed our own domestic abuse training package which is currently being rolled out to staff.
- To address gender-based violence and abuse within the workplace we have several policies and procedures in place to support staff. We launched our own Sexual Safety Charter this year and are also a signatory to the NHS Sexual Safety Charter. Signatories commit to taking and enforcing a ‘we will not tolerate’ approach to any unwanted, inappropriate and/or harmful sexual behaviours within the workplace, and to ten core principles and actions to help achieve this.
- We have a Women & Allies’ Network which aims to provide a safe and supportive space for women, colleagues who identify as a woman and male allies, to come together to celebrate women in the workplace, and champion issues that only affect or disproportionately affect women the Trust. The group’s priorities for 2023-24 are to:
- Actively promote and champion the new Parent Support Policy
- Establish the Women and Allies’ Network Mentorship Scheme
- Support the review of the Lone Working and Personal Safety Guidance
- Work with the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives and the NHS England Sexual Safety Group to review the toolkit of resources and prioritise based on survey outcomes
- Champion the provision of free sanitary products at all Trust sites
- Actively promote and champion the new Menopause Policy, training and guidance
- Work with staff networks to promote allyship, providing guidance and support
- Design and conduct an all-staff survey and evaluate outcomes to determine key themes and priorities.
Produced by: Corporate Communications Department