The reporting option is available to victims of domestic abuse who may find it difficult to report incidents over the phone. In an emergency, 999 should always be used.
Detective Chief Inspector Lucy Batchelor said: “Domestic abuse is unacceptable on every level and no one should think they need to suffer in silence. We are here to help you.
“We’re pleased to be able to offer this further method of reporting domestic abuse to the police for those that may not feel comfortable or be able to speak over the phone.
“We understand you might have concerns that you could be overheard, or prevented from making a call for help.
“You can access the report form via your smartphone, tablet or computer, and give us information about what’s happening to you.
“Please be reassured that any reports are sent to staff working 24/7 to monitor and assess them, and I want to stress that we will respond to that report in the same way as though you had reported it over the phone via 101.”
Anyone in an emergency situation should call 999. If you’re unable to speak out loud, you can make use of the ‘silent solution’. Here’s how it works:
All calls made to 999 are directed to a BT operator, who will ask what service you need. If no service is requested, but anything suspicious is heard throughout the process, BT operators will connect you to a police call handler
It is always best to speak to the operator if you can, even by whispering. You may also be asked to cough or tap the keys on your phone in response to questions
If making a sound would put you or someone else in danger and the BT operator cannot decide whether an emergency service is needed, your call will be transferred to the Silent Solution system
The Silent Solution helps to filter out accidental or hoax 999 calls – but also assist those who cannot or unable to speak
A 20-second automated message will play, which will ask you to press 55 to be put through to a police call handler. The BT operator will remain on the line and listen. If you press 55, they will be notified and transfer the call to the police. If you don’t press 55, the call will be terminated
The Silent Solution does not work on calls made from a landline. However, if a call from a landline is received and there is no request for an emergency, the caller does not answer or only background noise can be heard and the operator cannot decide whether an emergency service is needed, the call will be directed to a police call handler.
Domestic abuse joins road traffic incidents, antisocial behaviour and other types of crime that you can now easily report online. These reports are triaged, risk assessed and receive the same response as a 101 call.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland you can also contact United Against Violence and Abuse on 0808 802 0028 or visit http://www.uava.org.uk/