This police force’s open letter to domestic abuse victims has gone viral

Posted by
Susan Devaney
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A police force in Scotland has used social media to try to help a potential domestic abuse victim – and it’s gone viral. 

Lochaber and Skye Police in Scotland took to Twitter over the weekend (18 November) to post an open letter to an unnamed woman, encouraging her to come forward if she’s a victim of domestic abuse.

The series of tweets begins: “A letter to a young woman in Skye. We know you follow this account and want you to see this. We’ve told you previously that we think you are at risk of domestic abuse from your partner.”

The tweets then address possible things her partner may have said to her, in order to illustrate how domestic abuse can often be excused by its perpetrators.

“We think he’s probably told you, ‘It won’t happen again’, ‘I’m sorry’, ‘I’ll change’, he’s maybe even told you that it’s your fault - IT’S NOT.

“The violence, threats, degrading comments and controlling behaviour are not the life you need to lead, it can be better.”

The full thread can be found here.

Though it initially wasn’t clear whether the messages were genuinely aimed at one woman, the police force later said applicable to anyone in need of help, woman or man, describing the appeal as “a reach-out to anyone who may be at risk.”

The account also said there were over two million interactions with the force’s social media channel in the days following the initial thread.

The thread ends by imploring the woman to get in touch with the police or Women’s Aid.

And the series of tweets have earned praise on social media after going viral with several thousand likes and retweets.

One wrote: “I once worked with women and children living in domestic violence. The oldest woman to walk into the refuge was 84. It never stops until you make it stop.” 

“On behalf of the Hebrides Womens Network… thank you so much! I personally know of one domestic abuse victim who saw this today. This was a genius move on social media,” another posted.

“I hope your amazing and moving letter gives her the confidence and strength she needs to get out and regain control of her life. No one should have to endure domestic abuse. Thank you for trying to help her,” one user commented.

Images: Luiza Sayfullina