From rail to refuge, let’s keep victims safe!

Councillor Howard Sykes MBE, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group and Leader of the Opposition on Oldham Council, is trying to rally Greater Manchester bosses around a new way to help victims of domestic abuse.  The ‘Rail to Refuge’ scheme, is an essential but little-known lifeline.  It provides a lifeline to those fleeing domestic violence.  Rail to Refuge supports victims of domestic abuse by advising them to seek safety in a refuge well away from their abuser.  There have been worries that the scheme is not well publicised and that this is a temporary fix.

Rail to Refuge helps by purchasing a rail ticket for the victim to flee a situation of abuse.  Unfortunately, the Scheme has been time limited to the Covid-19 lockdown period.  Councillor Sykes is calling for a more permanent solution because it is a good model.

Howard Sykes

Councillor Sykes said: “It is my firm belief that the scheme should NOT be time-limited.  Many victims of domestic violence will still be denied access to family finance, and so still controlled by their abuser.” 

“Victims will still need access to free rail travel after Covid-19.  This is in order to flee their abusive situation,” stated Councillor Sykes.

These tickets can be accessed through the member services of Women’s Aid Federation of England, Welsh Women’s Aid, Scottish Women’s Aid and Imkaan, once they have received an offer of a refuge place. 

More information here:

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