It is now two years since we first locked down. The ways in which we deliver services has substantially changed. Housing providers have found new and innovative ways to reach out to their customers. This session looks at how they did that in relation to recognising and responding to domestic abuse.

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    We know that lockdown reduced the avenues available for support and escape. Figures from domestic abuse charity, Refuge, who runs the National Domestic Abuse Helpline revealed that in 2020, 72% of those the helpline team supported were women experiencing violence and abuse and that:

    • 81% described being controlled by their partner
    • 58% had been subjected to physical abuse
    • 24% were being stalked or harassed
    • 40% were subjected to economic abuse.

    We will hear from a range of housing providers about their experiences – the lessons they have learned and how they have adapted their approaches and services to better recognise and respond to domestic abuse:

    • How they changed their approaches to recognising and responding to domestic abuse
    • How they reach customers
    • How they have adapted the learning and developed their services post lockdown.
    • We will hear from a range of housing providers and learn.

    This is a practical session – essential for operational managers and teams working in domestic abuse as well as policy and strategy teams.

  • Our speakers

    Dr Kelly Henderson, Addressing Domestic Abuse

    Kelly is the founder and Managing Director of community interest Company, Addressing Domestic Abuse which supports housing providers to prepare for the upcoming changes to regulatory requirements around domestic abuse and ensure the voices of survivors are heard. Kelly’s interest in domestic abuse started over 25 years ago as part of her university placement at a women’s refuge, her final year dissertation analysed gender differences in charging and sentencing of domestic abuse homicides.  Before co-founding DAHA, Kelly was the Domestic and Sexual Violence Lead for a local authority, co-ordinating the city’s Multi Agency Domestic Abuse Partnership. Kelly’s housing experience includes roles in housing management, asylum, policy and research. She led a multi police force project (Domestic Abuse A Whole Systems Approach – DAWSA) to improve the Police response to domestic abuse and oversee research into the provision of a national response to perpetrators of domestic abuse.

    She has a Masters in Housing Policy / Management. Her PhD (Durham University) researched ‘the role of housing in a co-ordinated community response to domestic abuse’ and included the largest UK questionnaire to housing providers on domestic abuse. She co-authored ‘Housing and Domestic Abuse – Policy into Practice’ and was named 24 Housing’s ‘Housing Professional of the Year’ 2018 for her work and research on housing and domestic abuse. Kelly is a board member of Women in Social Housing North East, a trustee of the Alice Ruggles Trust, an Honorary Research Fellow at Durham University and a Non-executive Director at Believe Housing.

    Michelle Meldrum, Chief Executive, Berwickshire Housing Association

    Michelle joined Berwickshire Housing Association (BHA) as their Chief Executive in November 2020 with 24 years’ experience in the social housing sector having previously worked in a variety of roles.

    Michelle is passionate about everyone having the right to a decent home and a good quality of life and believes Housing Associations have a key role to play in achieving both of these outcomes in the communities in which they serve. Throughout her career Michelle has been heavily involved in the domestic abuse and wider safeguarding agenda as she believes the social housing sector has a unique role to play in any effective coordinated community response.

    Michelle is involved with a number of organisations in a non-executive capacity including The Sunderland Music Hub Board and CIH Scotland Housing Education Steering Group. Michelle is a qualified coach and mentor and actively supports others in relation to this.  In her spare time Michelle enjoys walking, going on holiday and is a member of a local brass band.

    Nicki Spear, Domestic Abuse Lead, Westward Housing

    Nicki is the Domestic Abuse lead for Westward Housing and is currently taking them through the process of obtaining DAHA Accreditation. Nicki is also the chair of the DAHA South West Regional group which links housing providers, support services and local authorities to provide innovative and joined up services across the region.

    In 2019 Nicki helped to organise the South West Domestic Abuse Conference in Bristol for around 200 repairs and maintenance contractors working in housing across the SW. In early 2020 Nicki wrote and presented a Domestic Abuse training video for repairs and maintenance contractors working in social housing to recognise and report signs of abuse.

    Nicki has been a member of the Experts by Experience Group working with Surviving Economic Abuse for around 4 years to and has also volunteered for a local DA support service helping to support victims. As a survivor of abuse Nicki now uses this knowledge and understanding to raise awareness of domestic abuse.

  • Price and booking


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    * Please note that all prices are subject to standard VAT. Byte Size members do not qualify for member discounts. Please call 01904 557150 for more information.

    Ticket Type Price Spaces
    Members of any HQN network - 1 delegate £175.00
    Members of any HQN network - 2 delegates £150.00
    Members of any HQN network - 3+ delegates £125.00
    Non-members - 1 delegate £200.00
    Non-members - 2 delegates £175.00
    Non-members - 3+ delegates £150.00

    By continuing with this booking you are agreeing to our booking terms and conditions

  • Cancellations and substitutions

    If you are unable to attend an event or public training course, please let us know in writing (email is fine) at least 48 hours before. Please email [email protected]

    Otherwise, a cancellation fee of £60 plus VAT will be chargeable.

    If you are using a package place to attend and do not inform us within the agreed time frame, then a place will be taken to cover your non-attendance.

    Cancellations must be made in writing, and will be acknowledged by HQN Limited.

Dates and prices

08 September 2022
10:30am - 1:00pm
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