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How vets can recognise domestic abuse

14 May 2014

​​Awareness of the links between domestic abuse and cruelty to animals is being raised among vets and their staff in Jersey.
Research and clinical evidence increasingly suggests links between the abuse of children, vulnerable adults and animals, and vets in Jersey are being asked to join their human medicine counterparts in recognising the links and tackling abuse.

Highlight links

The chairman of the Links Group, a campaigning organisation promoting the welfare and safety of vulnerable children, animals and adults, has been in Jersey to highlight the links.
Dr Freda Scott-Park and Detective Inspector Mark Hafey, Head of the Public Protection Unit, States of Jersey Police, led a meeting and discussion on the subject of domestic and animal abuse and the recognition of links between forms of abuse.

Spot signs of abuse

States Veterinary Officer, Linda Lowseck, supports the campaign, “Like doctors and dentists, vets often build strong relationships with clients over years of visits. This makes them ideally placed to spot signs of abuse not only in an animal but also in their owner. This is why we’d like to help raise awareness in Jersey and offer guidance on what to do to provide practical assistance.”

Training of vets

Detective Inspector Mark Hafey said, “The States of Jersey Police has expressed its determination and commitment to tackling domestic abuse and is also supporting the initiative.”
“Over the years we’ve seen a growing number of cases where both people and animals are being abused. The threat or actual abuse of a pet can often prevent people from leaving situations of domestic abuse. By supporting the training of vets to be aware of the signs of animal and domestic abuse, we can hopefully identify and support those who are suffering towards getting help.”
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