Officers backing National Stalking Awareness Week

Date published: 16 April 2018 10:13
Dated: 16 April 2018 11:12:17

Is someone persistently contacting you, publishing material that relates to you, interfering with your property or watching you?

Is their attention unwanted and causing you distress? If so, the perpetrator is committing a crime and we want you to talk to us.

Our message is clear as we lend our support to National Stalking Awareness Week 2018 (16 - 21 April), which starts today.

South Yorkshire Police Chief Inspector, Vicky Short said: “We take reports of stalking very seriously and want you to know you will be supported when you come and talk to us. Our officers are supporting the public and colleagues with the use of specialist knowledge and our call handlers have also received training to help signpost stalking victims to the most appropriate source of help or advice.

“There is still a lack of understanding around stalking and the types of behaviour that are recognised as stalking in law, that’s just one of the reasons why South Yorkshire Police is backing this high profile national campaign to let people know that they are not alone.

“You don’t have to live in fear or distress. Contact our specially trained officers and we will help and support you. Be assured, we will apprehend and prosecute offenders.”

The national campaign will focus on raising awareness of stalking and spotting the signs that it is occurring.

The definition of stalking is a pattern of repeated, unwanted behaviour that causes a person to feel distressed or in fear. It does not necessarily involve violence.

Monitoring, loitering, interfering and spying are additional types of stalking, commonly experienced by victims.

If you think you are being stalked, this list of tips may help;

  • Don’t speak to or engage with your stalker
  • If you are happy to – speak to friends, neighbours, or colleagues about what is happening to you. They may be able to evidence what’s happening to you or put some protective measures in place to support you
  • Trust your instincts – if it doesn’t feel comfortable then let someone know
  • Keep a diary of events
  • Be aware of your online profile and how much information you are making public. Make sure your personal data is safe and change your password frequently
  • Consider carrying a personal alarm or download a personal safety app to your smart phone
  • Contact Paladin, the National Stalking Advocacy Service
  • Contact the police on 101 or visit your nearest station. Always dial 999 in an emergency.
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