GamCare has showcased its support for the #HearHer global campaign, to end gender-based violence for all people who identify as female.
The #HearHer campaign was officially launched by Women’s Aid on 25 November and called on counterpart charities to promote 16-days of activism against gender-based violence.
Finishing today (10 December) on ‘Human Rights Day’ – Women’s Aid has pledged for its partners to continue to support the campaign’s headline directive of helping victims of gender violence and listening to survivors’ lived experiences of abuse and trauma.
As the UK’s leading provider of treatment support for problem gambling harms, GamCare pledged its support for the campaign as its frontline teams witnessed an “increasing numbers of callers reporting domestic abuse since the beginning of the pandemic, with support services being stretched.”
The charity has previously highlighted domestic abuse as a real-life consequence of gambling disorders, driven by victims’ anxiety, stress or depression. Furthermore, gambling might also become an escape or coping mechanism for those experiencing abuse.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, GamCare’s Helpline staff were increasingly concerned about the impact of domestic abuse from callers affected by someone else’s gambling, rising from 4% in 2019/20 to 6% in 2020/21.
During the UK’s lockdown, GamCare noted that total ‘safeguarding calls’ flagged by its Helpline staff grew by 696% from Q4 2019 to Q3 2020 – in which 80% of callers reported abuse from others
Since 2020, GamCare has operated its Women’s Support Programme tailored to provide dedicated support services for women experiencing gambling harms. The programme’s support has been bolstered by GamCare collaborating with domestic and gender abuse organisations such as Respect, the Make a Change Project and Women’s Aid.
“Through this work, the programme has challenged to think about how coercive control and economic abuse could factor in with gambling harms.” – GamCare cited.
“Ensuring this thought process is considered within processes and practice that improve identification and could make a significant impact in providing survivors with more tailored support.”
GamCare has called for all organisations providing support and well-being to place gender-abuse as a critical discipline of their programmes and to improve their treatment of victims through collaboration.