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National Helpline for LGBT+ Victims and Survivors of Abuse and Violence0800 999 5428

Email help@galop.org.uk

Joint statement: LGBT+ domestic violence and abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic

Over the last month professionals and activists, agencies, policymakers, and government have faced an extraordinary set of circumstances in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, including in relation to domestic violence and abuse.

While work has been going on behind the scenes to ensure the delivery of services, the public face of much of the response has focused on reaching out to victims and survivors who find themselves isolated with an abusive partner to try and make sure that they know that help and support are available. Alongside this, there has been an increased emphasis on ensuring family, friends, and neighbours also know how to recognise the signs of domestic violence and abuse and what they can do to help.

As a network of agencies and practitioners, researchers and activists, working on LGBT+ domestic abuse, we recognise this work is vital, and we will continue to work with our statutory and third sector partners to ensure that victims and survivors are supported.

We would like to support all those working on the response to domestic violence and abuse to continue to recognise the experiences of LGBT+ survivors. Research tells us that LGBT+ survivors can face a range of barriers to identifying their experiences, particularly if they are not explicitly represented in the public story of domestic violence and abuse.

We also know some LGBT+ survivors are more likely to reach out to friends or family, rather than domestic violence services or agencies like the Police, so it is important to ensure the communication to friends and families also recognizes that domestic abuse affects LGBT+ people.

This is why we have developed the following advice and guidance:

Advice and guidance

For friends and/or family who are worried that the LGBT+ person they know is being victimised by their partner;

Advice for friends/family of LGB and/or T+ people who might be in abusive relationships

Advice and guidance

For friends and/or family who are worried that the LGBT+ person they know is using violent/abusive behaviour towards their partner;

Advice for friends and/or family of LGB and/or T+ people who might be an abusive/controlling partner


Nik Noone
Peter Kelley
Jasna Magić
Catherine Donovan
Head of Domestic Abuse Service
Research & Policy Development
Professor of Sociology
Durham University
Heather Paterson LGBT+ Domestic AbuseDevelopment Worker SAYiT – Call It Out project
Elly Sinclair
James Rowlands
LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Development Worker
Doctoral Researcher
SAYiT – Call It Out project
University of Sussex
Maddi Scott LGBT+ Specialist Officer RISE
Rhys Dower Domestic Abuse Co-ordinator LGBT Foundation
Sajida Bandali Senior IDVA Birmingham LGBT
Tiffany Parsons LGBT IDVA Independent Choices



  1. The statement and the advice/guidance have been prepared by a network of agencies and practitioners, researchers and activists working on LGBT+ domestic violence and abuse. This work is unfunded.
  2. The fact sheets are intended for distribution. You do not need to seek permission to share them. However, please acknowledge the network and do not remove the logos.