A Facebook advertising campaign run by Shelter Scotland last weekend aimed at victims or potential victims of domestic abuse resulted in a huge surge in visits to its web site from women looking for help and advice.
The site’s domestic abuse information page received more than 1,000 visits, an increase of 541 percent, from Friday 18th to Monday 21st February, compared to the same weekend last month.
There was also a dramatic increase in visits to the ‘Leaving Home in a Hurry’ section which went up from seven visits to 393 – a 5000 percent increase. The ‘Legal Action on Partners’ page visits increased by 250 percent while the ‘Does the Council Have to House Me’ page visits also increased from 180 to 215 – a 20 percent increase.
The Facebook ad campaign was launched to coincide with the weekend’s Old Firm football match which Strathclyde Police says is often the catalyst for a spike in reported incidents of domestic abuse.
Alison Watson, Head of Services at Shelter Scotland, says: “These figures show that hundreds, perhaps thousands of people across Scotland, mainly women, went online to find advice and help on issues related to domestic abuse.
“And they weren’t just browsing. The average length of visit to our advice pages increased from one minute to four minutes.
“Following Sunday’s match, Strathclyde Police said it responded to 157 domestic abuse incidents. Analysis of our figures shows that this may only be the tip of the ice-berg and that there could be hundreds more unreported cases of people living in fear of or suffering abuse.
“Our Facebook awareness campaign is designed to provide people with another access point to round-the-clock advice and show them that there is always somewhere to turn for help.
“Shelter Scotland’s expert advice and services are available all year round. Anyone concerned about domestic abuse either personally, or who knows someone in danger, should seek advice or point others towards advice as soon as possible. Help is available from the Get Advice section on our web site – www.shelter.org.uk and our helpline 0808 800 4444.”
The adverts and advice can be accessed at www.facebook.com/shelterinscotland
Notes to Editors:
1. Shelter Scotland, the housing and homelessness charity. Shelter Scotland believes that everyone should have a home. We help people find and keep a home. We campaign for decent housing for all.
2. Spokespeople are available for interview, telephone the media office on 0844 515 2442. An ISDN line number is available for broadcast interviews.
3. For more information about Shelter Scotland visit www.shelter.org.uk
4. Follow Shelter Scotland on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/shelterinscotland
Twitter – http://twitter.com/shelterscotland
Contact: Neil Baldwin
Phone: 0844 515 2442