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Live chat for crime victims is now open 24 hours a day

Live chat for crime victims is now open 24 hours a day

by Danielle Thompson (May 2020)

LANCASHIRE Victim Services' live chat is now open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to support anyone affected by crime in the county. The chat function has proved popular since its launch in 2019 and the service has decided to extend the opening hours in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The chat connects users directly to one of Lancashire Victim Services' Independent Victim Advocates who can provide support and advice to anyone who needs it.

Claire Powell, account manager at Lancashire Victim Services said: “Our phone lines are already open 24 hours a day but for some people, taking the first step and picking up the phone can be really daunting. Our live chat provides a different option to contact us which some people may find easier. People who are isolating with children may benefit from extended opening hours and can contact us through the chat after their children go to bed.

“Some people may worry about being overheard if they contact us over the phone so this is an option to speak to us without the possibility of anyone listening in. This option may be beneficial for those who are affected by domestic or sexual abuse but are unable to call for fear of the abuser overhearing them, particularly during lockdown when the opportunities to seek support may be fewer.

“We want to make it as easy as possible for anyone who needs us to get in touch. If you have been affected by any type of crime please contact us in whichever way suits you best.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw added: "I am really pleased to see Lancashire Victim Service respond to the current pandemic to make services even more accessible to those who need them most.

“It's important to do all we can to support anyone affected by crime here in Lancashire and the extended live chat opening hours will help to do that.

“If you need support, please don't suffer in silence, Lancashire Victim Services are here to help."

Anyone affected by crime can find the live chat at https://www.lancashirevictimservices.org, call 0300 323 0085 or email info@lancashirevictimservices.org.

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