12 May 2021

TSB becomes first bank to offer Safe Spaces for victims of domestic abuse

  • Charity Hestia’s Safe Spaces initiative expands as TSB becomes the first high street bank to offer scheme and joins 5,300 pharmacies in providing Safe Spaces for victims.
  • TSB’s national commitment sees rollout in 290 branches across the UK and follows pilots in Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Shropshire.
  • Safe Spaces provides a space for victims of domestic abuse to phone a helpline, contact a support service or talk to a friend or family member.

From today, victims of domestic abuse can access a Safe Space in 290 TSB branches across the UK to seek specialist support and advice, as TSB becomes the first bank to sign up to the scheme.

Launched by the domestic abuse charity Hestia and its UK SAYS NO MORE campaign, with support from People’s Postcode Lottery Recovery fund, the scheme will enable more victims to find help on their local high street especially as lockdown restrictions ease across the UK.

TSB’s commitment follows three pilots run in its Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Shropshire branches over the last six months as Hestia partnered with the Bank and local police forces to roll out the scheme.

Safe Spaces was initially developed during the pandemic in response to the rising numbers of domestic abuse victims trapped at home with their abusers. Expanding it to TSB branches will take the total to over 5,600 Safe Spaces nationwide.

Hestia has seen domestic abuse cases surge in the last year and during this latest lockdown there has been a 30 percent increase in demand for support to victims. There has also been a 10 percent increase in downloads of Hestia’s free domestic abuse smartphone app, Bright Sky, compared to the first lockdown. As lockdown restrictions start to ease, the charity is warning that demand could rise further as victims reach out for help after being isolated at home for so long.

All TSB branch colleagues have received specialist training to increase their confidence in responding to disclosures of domestic abuse and will provide victims with access to the Safe Space in their branch.

Victims can use a private room to make telephone calls, speak to a trained staff member and contact the local police force if necessary. The support is available to both TSB customers and members of the public and adheres to current health and safety regulations, ensuring people can still visit safely.

Sue Harper, Head of Domestic Abuse Prevention at Hestia said: “During the pandemic, self-isolation has given abusers a new method of control over victims making it very difficult for them to get the help they need. As restrictions ease, it’s vital that access to specialist domestic abuse support is readily accessible. 

“Businesses have a unique role in breaking the silence around domestic abuse. By providing a Safe Space in their banks, TSB will help us reach many more victims of domestic abuse, ensuring they get the specialist help and advice they need. We hope many more businesses will follow their lead and support this scheme.”

Sara*, a survivor of domestic abuse, told Hestia: “Women or men who have been 'forced' to be indoors with an abusive partner or family member really need a 'safe haven' where they can retreat to collect their thoughts and get support. Sometimes getting out of that bubble of abuse, that you are in at home, helps you to realise that help is out there.

“An abuser wouldn't really think that their victim could access help at their local bank or pharmacy so being able to contact a domestic violence helpline in this way will be life changing for many."

The Domestic Abuse Commissioner, Nicole Jacobs, said: “The last year has been extremely difficult for everyone but even more so for domestic abuse victims who have often been trapped in lockdown for months on end with perpetrators. Getting help has been nigh on impossible for many.

“Some of those survivors were offered a lifeline by the Safe Spaces scheme which meant that victims could access support through thousands of pharmacies all over the country. I am delighted to see that TSB has signed up to this scheme and will now offer victims support in their high street branches.

“Domestic abuse is everyone’s business and I urge more business to offer support and help to domestic abuse victims.”

Carol Anderson, Director of TSB’s Branch Network, said: “It’s clear during lockdown victims of domestic abuse have had fewer opportunities to seek help safely. For some, going into their local bank will be one of the few connections they have with the wider community and in partnership with Hestia we’ll be there to offer that support when they need it most.”

Notes to editors

To find your nearest Safe Space visit: uksaysnomore.org/safespaces

See bottom of press release for full list of TSB branches

About Hestia & UK SAYS NO MORE:

Hestia is one of the largest providers of domestic abuse refuges in London and the South East and is the main organisation supporting victims of modern slavery in the capital. It is the home of domestic abuse and sexual violence campaign UK SAYS NO MORE and developed the Bright Sky domestic abuse app in partnership with Vodafone. This year, it celebrates 50 years of providing support to those in crisis by providing safehouses, refuge accommodation and support.

Safe Spaces was developed as an initiative of the UK SAYS NO MORE campaign in response to the challenges faced by victims of domestic abuse during the COVID-19 lockdown and their inability to access specialist support services. It was first launched in partnership with Boots and is now available in over 5,600 pharmacies across the UK, including major brands such as Superdrug, Morrisons and Well and local independent pharmacists. Many pharmacy Safe Spaces also now offer the Government’s Ask for ANI codeword as a companion to Safe Spaces.

Hestia’s Safe Spaces initiative was awarded over £652,000 by Postcode Innovation Trust, a grant making trust funded entirely by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

TSB branches now offering a Safe Space

This latest partnership from TSB is one of the ways it’s delivering against its commitments in its responsible business strategy, the Do What Matters Plan, to work with communities and offer help to people who need it most.

Aberdeen, Rosehill Gainsborough Newport, Commercial Street
Aberdeen, St Nicholas Galashiels Newton Aycliffe
Aberfeldy Gateshead Northallerton
Aberystwyth Gillingham Northampton, Weston Favell
Alloa Glasgow, Byres Road Northgate Wakefield
Alton Glasgow, Pollok Norwich, Guildhall Hill
Amble Glasgow, Shawlands Norwich, Magdalen Street
Arbroath Glasgow, Shettleston Nottingham, Clifton
Ashton-in-Makerfield Glasgow, St. Vincent Nottingham, Eastwood
Aylesbury Glasgow, Cardonald Nottingham, Sherwood
Aylsham Glasgow, Castlemilk Nottingham, West Bridgford
Ayr Glenrothes Oban
Bamber Bridge Gloucester Oldbury
Banbury Goole Ossett
Banff Greenford Oswestry
Barnsley Greenock Oxford
Barnstaple Grimsby, Victoria Street Paisley, High Street
Barrington Street Haddington Perth
Bath Halesowen Peterborough, 30-31 Long Causeway
Bedford Hamilton Peterhead
Bedlington Hanley Pitsea
Bedworth Harold Hill Plymouth, Armada Way
Beverley Harrow, St Ann's Road Portsmouth
Biddulph Hereford Preston, Fishergate
Billingham High Wycombe Quedgeley
Birmingham, Great Barr Horsham Rawtenstall
Birmingham, Longbridge Hounslow Reading
Birmingham, New Street Huddersfield, Cloth Hall St Redcar
Birmingham, Perry Barr Hull, 87-91 Jameson Street Redditch
Birmingham, Sheldon Ilford Retford
Birmingham, Pype Hayes Inverness Romford, Stewards Walk
Birmingham, Saltley Inverurie Romsey
Bishop's Stortford Ipswich, Buttermarket Ross On Wye
Blackpool Irvine Rushden
Bluewater Park Jarrow Rutherglen
Bolsover Keighley Sheerness
Bolton, Hotel Street Keynsham Sheffield, Darnall
Bootle, New Strand Kilmarnock Sheffield, Meadowhall
Boscombe Kings Lynn Sheffield, Woodseats
Bradford Kingston-Upon-Thames Shrewsbury
Bridlington Kirkcaldy, High Street Slough
Bridport Kirkintilloch Smethwick, Cape Hill
Brighton, Western Road Kirkwall Solihull
Bristol, Bedminster Lanark Somerton
Bristol, Merchant Street Ledbury Southampton, Above Bar
Bromley Leeds, Headrow Southend-on-Sea
Buckie Leicester, The Roundway St Andrews
Bude Leicester, Town Hall Square St Helens
Burton-on-Trent Lerwick Stevenage
Bury St Edmunds Leven Stirling
Buxton Lincoln, High Street Stonehaven
Camberley Liverpool, Garston Stornoway
Cambridge Liverpool, Lord Street Stourport-on-Severn
Cardiff, Working Street Liverpool, Maghull Stowmarket 
Carmarthen, Blue Street Liverpool, Old Swan Stranraer
Chatham Livingston Sunderland, Athenaeum Street
Chelmsford, 88/89 High Street London, Archway Swaffham
Cheltenham, High Street London, Bermondsey Swansea, Union Street
Chichester London, Bethnal Green Swindon, The Parade
Chorley London, Cheapside Taunton
Cirencester London, Clapham Tavistock
Cleveleys London, Crouch End Telford
Clydebank London, Greenwich Tenbury Wells
Colchester London, Hammersmith Tewkesbury
Coventry, High Street London, Harlesden Thornbury
Crawley London, Leytonstone Thurso
Crook London, Peckham Torquay, St Marychurch
Croydon London, Stamford Hill Truro
Cumbernauld London, Tottenham Tunbridge Wells
Cwmbran, General Rees Square London, West End Uxbridge
Darlington, Blackwellgate Longton Wallington
Derby, East Street Louth Walsall, The Bridge
Doncaster, High St Luton Wantage, Market Place
Dovercourt Maesteg Warrington, Buttermarket Street
Dumfries Maidstone Watford
Dundee, Meadowside Maltby Wellington
Dundee, Broughty Ferry Manchester, Denton West Bromwich
Dundee, Coldside Manchester, Eccles Weston-Super-Mare
Dunfermline Manchester, Longsight Whitchurch
Ealing Manchester, Market Street Whitehaven
East Kilbride Manchester, Middleton Wigan, Pemberton
Eastbourne Manchester, Wythenshawe Wilmslow
Edinburgh, Cameron Toll Maryport Wimborne
Edinburgh, Hanover Street Melton Mowbray Winsford
Edinburgh, Leith Merry Hill Witney
Elgin Midsomer Norton Wolverhampton, Queen Street
Ellon Milton Keynes Worcester
Enfield, 22-24 Church Street Minehead Wrexham
Evesham Morden Yeovil
Exeter Morecambe York, Parliament Street
Exmouth Morpeth  
Falkirk Motherwell  
Felixstowe Musselburgh  
Flint Nantwich  
Forfar Nelson  
Forres Newark  
Fort William Newbury  
Fraserburgh Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, St Mary's  
Frodsham Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Milvain  
Frome Newport (IOW)  




 

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