M Stamler, Salford M7
In last week’s report on Jewish Women’s Aid you stated that “anecdotally, Jewish women wait longer [before seeking assistance from domestic abuse services] because of stigma within the community and their families, because of feelings of shame, and of course to protect their children.” This unfortunate turn of phrase may inadvertently discourage affected women from seeking help. Every woman wants to protect her children and do what is best for them. However, remaining in an abusive relationship does not “protect children”. children. According to the NSPCC, children exposed to domestic violence are more likely to have behavioural and emotional problems, including depression, anxiety, aggression and anti-social behaviour.
What a shame the JC did not take this opportunity to directly challenge the myth that it is better “for the children” for a Jewish woman to remain in an abusive relationship. Gabrielle Joseph,
Your timely front-page report on the increase in reported domestic abuse reflects the Prime Minister’s intention, announced on the same day, to bring in new legislation to tackle this “life-shattering, abhorrent crime”. The statistics from the JWA account for only a small proportion of Jewish women who are silently suffering in an abusive relationship, often with children who are victims themselves. Some women will, after putting up with the abuse for years, eventually