Essex Police set out plans as domestic violence expected to rise during World Cup

ESSEX Police has put a number of policing operations in place in order to minimise an expected rise in domestic incidents during the World Cup.

According to research published in the Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency (2013) police forces across the UK could see a rise of at least 26% on evenings when England are playing. Research suggests that when the England team win or draw domestic incidents rise by 26% and rise by 38% when England lose. In Essex this could mean an additional 22 domestic incidents when England win or draw and 33 incidents when England lose. There could also be an 11 % rise in incidents the day after an England game.

Operation Shield is the force’s proactive operation to manage the most dangerous domestic abuser perpetrators. Following best practice nationally, the force uses a data mining tool to identify those perpetrators who pose the greatest risk to their victims. Essex Police has identified the top 117 perpetrators likely to offend during the England matches, 110 men and 7 women and is targeting them in order to reduce the likelihood of further offending and protect their victims.

In June 2013 the average number of domestic incidents was 84 per day and police are concerned that this could rise to over 100 incidents a day on days when England is playing. Last year in Essex there were 2533 domestic incidents reported in June and 2897 in July 2013, this equates to 84 and 93 incidents per day on average respectively. In total Essex Police dealt with over 28,000 domestic incidents throughout last year.

Detective Superintendent Ewen Wilson said: “There are a number of reasons why the rise in domestic abuse is linked to the times when England are playing a match. These can include such things as stress, poor anger management mental health issues, depression and substance abuse. In addition, emotional stressors are combined with situational factors – the tournament is held in the summer and is associated with warmer temperatures and increased alcohol consumption and fans can often identify with team success or failure as if it was their own, which can have an impact on their behaviour.”

“Research published in the European Journal of Public Health (2012) found the 2010 World Cup tournament was associated with a 37.5% rise in admission rates across 15 hospital emergency departments in England on match days. The majority of football fans are well behaved and enjoy watching the games with family and friends. We want the tournament to be a time that everyone can enjoy, which is why we have put a number of policing operations in place, to help to keep it a safe time for everyone. It’s important to remember that is not the actual World Cup that heightens the risk of domestic incidents but specifically when the England team plays. ”

Essex Police has a number of additional resources in place to deal with any increase in related incidents , including extra double and single crewed cars in place during and after all England matches and the following day.

You can also get involved with the largest ever domestic abuse campaign being led by Essex Police in partnership with Essex County Council and supported by all of the borough councils across the county. The Standing Together Against Domestic Abuse campaign has lots of information and advice about domestic abuse, and everyone can get involved. You can use the hashtag #tweetyourfeet on social media to say #NoToDomesticAbuse and join the conversation. For more information go to www.essex.police.uk/standingtogether

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