Domestic abuse
and Coronation Street

In the first few weeks of the lockdown restrictions, calls to domestic abuse charities jumped by a significant percentage; months later, and concerns around the rise in domestic abuse reports remain high. There have been numerous media campaigns urging those suffering from domestic abuse to seek help, with even one BBC news journalist writing the National Domestic Abuse Helpline – 0808-2000-247- on her hand as she delivered the news to the nation in April.

Paralegal Natalie Kralski has looked at one of the UK’s most popular continuing dramas, Coronation Street, which recently featured a prominent storyline of domestic abuse between characters Yasmeen Nazir and Geoff Metcalfe.

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“If you believe you are, or someone you know is suffering from this kind of domestic violence, then there are ways to help you, and them.”

Natalie Kralski

“This difficult but important narrative depicts a clear example of coercive control, in which Yasmeen is subjected to gas-lighting, financial control and behaviour which leads to her being completely isolated – ultimately lashing out, violently. Even though there is no example of physical violence from Geoff during the relationship, the subtle and mounting coercive control by him is a vivid example of the emotional abuse victims, of any type of character, can suffer from.

This example shows how perpetrators of domestic abuse control their partners, and shines a light on how those who suffer such abuse are often unable to recognise either the signs of, or the actual abuse itself, immediately even when those close to them are raising their concern about the behaviour of their partner to them.

If you believe you are, or someone you know is suffering from this kind of domestic violence, then there are ways to help you, and them. At McAlister Family Law we can help victims of domestic abuse by advising them on the most appropriate course of action in their particular situation, whether that is linked to the possible breakdown of a marriage or in relation to the living and/or arrangements for children between separated parents.

Under the current Legal Aid eligibility rules, victims of domestic violence are entitled to free legal aid if they make certain requirements. The key requirements are:

If you require any advice on this subject, our legal aid team offer a free consultation in order to assist you in determining the most appropriate course of action and to assess whether you are eligible for free legal aid.”

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