Lancashire Police is marking National Stalking Awareness Week (Monday 20th April until Friday 24th April 2020) by encouraging people who are being stalked to continue to report incidents of stalking to them. With the current climate of Coronavirus and the nation in lockdown, the campaign, called 2020; See Stalking Clearly and led by the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, focuses upon ensuring victims of stalking remain visible and that we all see stalking clearly.
Stalking is a pattern of fixated, obsessive, unwanted and repetitive behaviour that leaves a victim in fear for their safety and in some circumstances, their lives. It can take the form of someone making unwanted contact physically, on the phone or online, someone threatening or damaging property, or following or spying on a person. It can happen to anyone and is a criminal offence.
Det Chief Inspector Mike Gladwin of the Public Protection Unit at Lancashire Constabulary stressed that the police are here and ready to protect and support victims of stalking: “Today and every day, we’re committed to protecting our communities. I want to reassure people who are being stalked that despite the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain dedicated to safeguarding you and bringing offenders to justice.
“Stalking is a serious crime and during lockdown, the risks from stalking are unlikely to reduce and, in many cases, may become more pronounced.
“I’d also like to emphasise that under the lockdown rules, you can leave your home (if it is safe to do so) to go to a secure location or to get help.
“If you are being stalked, I actively encourage you to contact us and raise your concerns immediately. If you are in immediate danger always dial 999.
“Support and advice is also available through the Suzy Lamplugh Trust who run the National Stalking Helpline – 0808 802 0300. The helpline can provide you with help and advice on your situation.”
For more information about stalking, please visit www.lancashire.police.uk/help-advice/personal-safety/stalking-and-harassment/