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Police hail introduction of Operation Encompass

One year on from Operation Encompass being rolled out across all of Northern Ireland, the PSNI police service says the scheme has successfully supported thousands of children affected by domestic abuse.

Under Operation Encompass officers attending a domestic abuse case where children are present pass the relevant information to the safeguarding team at the child’s school the following morning so the correct support can be put in place. The Police Service of Northern Ireland receives a monthly average of 2,750 reports of domestic incidents, resulting in 740 referrals to schools.

The education authority’s head of child protection, Michael Kelly, added: “We know that domestic abuse is a common feature in the lives of many of our children. Feedback from schools during the rollout has indicated that Operation Encompass has been transformational in terms of a teacher’s ability to provide timely and informed support to child victims of domestic violence.”

School principal Philip Smith pointed out: “Not all calls [from the police] dictate action, with some merely only a watching brief, but each call allows our safeguarding team to build a better picture around each child within our care.”

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