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Mayor renews charity appeal as domestic violence cases soar

Publication date:

St Albans Mayor Janet Smith has renewed her plea for charity donations after a rise in domestic violence cases during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Councillor Smith made St Albans and Hertsmere Women’s Refuge (SAHWR) her charity for this Mayoral year.

Figures published this month show that there has been a 33% increase across the UK for services like SAHWR which supports domestic abuse victims.

The rise is believed to have been caused by the strain and tension brought about by people spending more hours at home.

Cllr Smith’s term as Mayor of the City and District of St Albans was extended for an extra year in May after local elections were cancelled because of by the Covid-19 emergency.

She said:

When I started the new term, I said that the lockdown would lead to an increase in domestic abuse and for that reason I chose SAHWR to be my charity.

Sadly, I have been proven correct and there has been a significant rise in demand for the services offered by SAHWR.

I have been doing what I can to raise funds, but like everyone else my activities have been disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

I haven’t been able to get about as much as I would like, so for that reason I would urge people in the District to spare a thought for domestic abuse victims and to consider making a donation to SAHWR.

Quietly and effectively, they do a tremendous amount of good work in our community and I am proud to support their efforts.

To make a donation to the Mayor’s charity, go to:

To find out more about SAHWR, please see:

Contact for the Mayor’s office: 
Alison Orde, the Mayor’s Civic Officer 
Tel: 01727 819544 

Contact for the media: 
John McJannet,
Principal Communications Officer,
Tel: 01727 819533