People who have been victims of crime in Cumbria can now get real-time advice 24 hours a day, seven days a week from Victim Support’s online live-chat. The live-chat gives users the opportunity to speak to trained supporters online and in confidence.
The service can be found on the Victim Support website and offers advice on all types of crime from fraud, theft and sexual abuse and domestic abuse. Support is provided regardless of when the crime happened or if it has been reported to the police.
Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, who provides funding to Victim Support, said: “This is an incredible service for anyone who needs advice and support on a crime that has affected them.
“There is no such thing as a victimless crime and any crime can take an emotional and mental toll on someone – that’s why it’s so important to have a service that can provide help to ease the affect.
“I always encourage anyone who has experienced a crime to report to the police on 101 or 999 in an emergency situation however I understand that some people do not feel comfortable doing so.
“Victim support is completely confidential and can help put you in touch with the right service that can best support you.”
Detective Chief Inspector Dan St Quintin said: “The new live-chat feature is a fantastic addition to the services that Victim Support offer Domestic Abuse victims, especially in the lockdown period where many victims may be unable to speak on the phone if they are at home with their abusers.
“Being able to discreetly chat to someone who can help online could potentially save a victims life.”
Claire Powell, Area Manager at Victim Support, said: “At this difficult time many people affected by crime will be worried, or may understandably find certain aspects of day-to-day life more challenging.
“At the same time the need for support for victims of crime such as those suffering domestic abuse, fraud and hate crime is growing.
“Now, more than ever, those affected by crime need to be able to access support services at a time that suits them.”
Victim Support’s live-chat can be found on victimsupport.org.uk