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Gloucestershire Police to feature on podcast in discussion about stalking

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A highly-rated UK podcast has hosted a conversation with Gloucestershire Constabulary about its work to tackle stalking.

Should I Delete That? presented by Alex Light and Em Clarkson, has more than 2.5 million downloads and discusses ‘polarising conversations, talking to experts and tackling shame’.

The episode on stalking offers advice on how the friends and family of stalking victims can best support their loved ones through the experience.

A victim of stalking also details her experiences and there is national advice from the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, a charity focused on reducing the risk and prevalence of stalking and harassment through education and campaigning.

The podcast will be available on all streaming platforms, including Spotify and Apple podcasts, from Monday 31 July.

Alex Light, co-host of Should I Delete That?, said: “This campaign from Gloucestershire Constabulary is so important to not only raise awareness of the incredibly high number of stalking cases in the UK, and how many of us have been subject to it and perhaps too afraid to speak out, but also highlights the many nuances we have grown up with through film and TV that have normalised stalking behaviours.

“Being able to recognise when stalking is stalking and how to speak up about it is key to making a change and helping others. We’re so pleased to have this conversation with police on the Should I Delete That? podcast, and hope it will really help anyone struggling with a potential stalker and not knowing quite what to do.”

Detective Inspector Dave McCoy said: “We’re pleased to have been involved in this podcast and be given the opportunity to reach more people on a really important issue.

“Stalking can have a lasting emotional and psychological impact on victims and their families, as well as cause utter fear. Spotting the signs is the first step, and we’re grateful to help shine a light on the reality of concerning behaviour which has often been normalised through television and film.

“The aim of our campaign is for people, whether that is family or friends of someone who has an abusive ex-partner, to recognise the signs at the earliest opportunity, so that this can be reported to police and we can put measures in place to prevent things from escalating and get the victim support.”

The podcast appearance is part of the Force’s ongoing five-month campaign to raise awareness of stalking and it follows the release of a romantic comedy trailer in June, made to highlight the problematic behaviours which constitute stalking.

two-minute film shows what appears on the surface as a ‘happy couple’, however the red flags soon appear with the behaviour escalating when the relationship ends.

The Constabulary’s campaign and its in-house work to tackle stalking was discussed on the podcast alongside the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, which runs the National Stalking Helpline.

Sarah-Louise Edwards, Head of Operations for the charity, said: “We were delighted to be involved with the Should I Delete That? podcast and raise awareness about this important issue.

“Stalking is a psychological crime that can have a profound and long-lasting impact on the victim. It is crucial that more is done to support victims when they need it the most. If you, or someone you know, has been a victim of stalking, you can get in touch with the National Stalking Helpline at 0808 802 0300.”

In addition, the Constabulary is hosting two in-person events over the next week, targeted at friends or family of those who might be victim of stalking.

Local police will be joined by stalking experts from Victim Support, Fearless and Gloucestershire Domestic Abuse Support Service to offer advice, support and a listening ear for any concerns related to stalking.

These will take place on-board the Constabulary’s Neighbourhood Engagement Vehicle:

Stalking is a pattern of unwanted, repeated behaviour which can leave you feeling scared or distressed. You do not have to be threatened with violence to be a victim of stalking, and any kind of persistent, unwanted contact which causes distress is stalking.

Sometimes stalking behaviours can appear small in isolation, but when they are combined into a pattern which follows the FOUR mnemonic – Fixated, Obsessed, Unwanted, Repeated – then you should record it, keep a log of evidence and report it before it escalates further.

For further advice about spotting the signs of stalking and how to report it and seek support, visit www.talkingstalking.com. In an emergency always call 999.

If you are not sure if you are being stalked you can contact the National Stalking Helpline: https://www.suzylamplugh.org/pages/category/national-stalking-helpline or 0808 802 0300.

The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme gives any member of the public the right to ask the police if their partner may pose a risk to them. It is often called Clare’s Law after the landmark case that led to it.

This scheme also allows a member of the public to make an enquiry into the partner of a close friend or family member. For more information on this visit: https://www.gloucestershire.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/daa/domestic-abuse/alpha2/request-information-under-clares-law/

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