All officers of the Royal Gibraltar Police are to be trained to deal with domestic abuse in the local community. The Minister of Justice and Equality, the Hon Samantha Sacramento, has opened the first ‘Domestic Abuse Matters’ training session delivered by SafeLives, a UK charity dedicated to ending domestic abuse. SafeLives have already provided similar training to more than half the police authorities in the UK.
For two days this week, SafeLives instructors will be ‘training the trainers’. In addition to RGP officers, professionals from other relevant departments such as the Probation Service, the Care Agency and the GHA will also gain the necessary skills and knowledge to assist on future training courses.
As a result of this training, everyone who has to deal with domestic abuse incidents will have a better understanding of both the victims and the perpetrators.
The course content has been designed by SafeLives and the College of Policing and the aim is to improve police response to all forms of domestic abuse, including coercive and controlling behaviours. For the majority of RGP officers, the training will be delivered as a one-day package but there will be additional training for ‘domestic abuse champions.’ These champions will lead debriefs and assist in improving the RGP’s response to relevant incidents.
Assistant Commissioner Cathal Yeats said “The learning outcomes from this course will allow us to build on the experience that we already have within the RGP and improve our response, by effectively dealing with domestic abuse, safeguarding victims and prosecuting offenders.
“Victims can be left with life changing physical injuries and psychological trauma or in some cases result in the loss of a life, as we have experienced in Gibraltar. By responding to Domestic Abuse effectively, we can save lives.”
Minister Sacramento said “Tackling Domestic Abuse is a priority for Her Majesty’s Government and a fundamental issue which needs to be confronted by our community. I am pleased to work alongside the RGP and SafeLives in order to enhance the knowledge and skills of our first responders.
“No one should live in fear. It is not acceptable, not inevitable, and together – we can make it stop.”