Male domestic abuse victim wants equality of treatment

Mr McNicholl in 2009
Image caption Ian McNicholl was scalded by boiling water at the hands of his fiancée

A man who suffered months of violence from his fiancée has joined calls for male victims of domestic abuse to get the same support as female victims.

Ian McNicholl, of Grimsby, was scalded by boiling water and had cigarettes stubbed out on him before his partner was jailed for seven years in 2009.

He said police had "saved my life" but he was not given a safe place to stay.

North East Lincolnshire Safer and Stronger Communities said there were support groups for male victims.

Humberside Police figures show a rise in the number of men reporting domestic abuse to more than one in five cases.

The figures show 2,382 men reported that they were victims of domestic abuse in 2010-11, alongside 8,566 cases reported by women.

That is a 16% increase in the number of men reporting domestic abuse compared with 2009-10.

The figures came from a freedom of information request by national charity Mankind Initiative.

The charity has called on councils, police and other parties to support male victims in the same way as female victims.

'Nowhere to go'

Despite the rise in cases reported by the police, the charity said it believed the actual number of male domestic violence victims in the area was much higher.

It said the national British Crime Survey showed men accounted for two in every five cases of domestic abuse.

Mr McNicholl's abuse ended when a neighbour told the police and he said the officers turning up "saved my life".

But he claimed that in the days following the abuse there was "nowhere to go" and he had to find his own place to stay.

Mr McNicholl said: "All victims should have equal access to support."

North East Lincolnshire Safer and Stronger Communities, a partnership between agencies including the council and Humberside Police, said there were groups in the Grimsby area that could offer support and advice to male victims.

Details of these groups are available on the partnership's website.

A spokesman added: "The partnership brings together a number of agencies who ensure that help is available for male victims of domestic abuse.

"An increase in reporting can be seen as a positive as it demonstrates the work we have undertaken to encourage male victims to report domestic abuse."

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