National Stalking Awareness week culminates this Friday, 24th April in National Stalking Awareness Day which focusing on raising awareness about the crime of stalking.
- 1 in 20 callers to the National Stalking Helpline state they are being stalked by a colleague or ex colleague.
- In a quarter of all cases reported to the National Stalking Helpline, a stalker will present at the victim’s workplace.
- 50% of stalking victims reduce or stop work as a consequence of being stalked.
Detective Superintendent Jo Williams, Head of the North Wales Public Protection Units said “Investigations relating to stalking can be linked to some of the most serious crimes that the police deal with including murder, sexual offences and domestic abuse. North Wales Police are committed to tackling stalking and harassment and recognise our role as an employer of over 2500 people in identifying and tackling stalking in the workplace”.
DI Lisa Surridge, North Wales Police Public Protection Unit and chairperson of the North Wales Safeguarding Children Board, communications and consultation group added “The impact of stalking and harassment on victims, families and communities can be devastating, however many victims do not recognise that the abuse they are experiencing is illegal, and that there is legislation to protect them. The law to protect people from stalking in England and Wales is the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 and it was amended in November 2012 to specifically include ‘stalking’. North Wales Police will use this legislation whenever possible to ensure we bring the perpetrators of this serious crime to justice and make North Wales a Safer Place. This is very much a multi-agency approach with a firm commitment from all agencies who are involved in making victims safer.”
Winston Roddick, the Police and Crime Commissioner for North Wales, said “Being a victim of stalking and harassment is not only unpleasant but very frightening and I am pleased that thanks to our efforts we are seeing more people coming forward to report this terrifying crime.
It is important for them to know we have the systems in place to offer proper support for victims of stalking and other sexual offences – and stalkers should be left in no doubt that they will be brought to justice and punished. If these crimes aren’t reported then they can’t be detected and we now have dedicated teams to deal with these offences so the whole climate for victims of sexual assault is very different to what it was. People also need to be aware of the increase in cyber stalking and that is why it is so important to be careful of what is revealed when chatting online, using social media like Facebook or taking up online dating.”
Anyone who believes they may be experiencing Stalking or Harassment is encouraged to contact North Wales Police on 101 or in an emergency 999. Further support and information is also available from The National Stalking and Harassment Helpline on 0808 802 0300 or via their website http://www.stalkinghelpline.org/
National Stalking Awareness Week is organised by the Suzy Lamplugh Trust and this week marks the fifth anniversary of the National Stalking Helpline. The Suzy Lamplugh Trust have launched a short film called What is Stalking and its formal launch is planned for today Monday 24th April 2015 . To watch click https://www.givey.com/suzylamplughtrust.