Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall visited Boots on Piccadilly Circus to hear about Boots Safe Spaces initiative, and its support of the charity Hestia and its UK SAYS NO MORE campaign.
With one in four women and one in six men experiencing domestic abuse in the UK, and that number estimated to have been much higher during the lockdown, Boots has been using its pharmacy consultation rooms in 2,400 stores across the UK as ‘Safe Spaces’
In Boots Pharmacy Consultation Rooms, victims can contact specialist domestic abuse services for support and advice, including information on Hestia’s Bright Sky app, which saw an increase of 47% in downloads during the lockdown.
The Safe Spaces scheme was launched during the lockdown period in response to the desperate situation facing many victims who were isolating with perpetrators. In the first week of these spaces being available, Boots estimated that over 100 people accessed them.
Speaking at the visit, Her Royal Highness, said:
“I’d like to thank Boots for all it’s done throughout lockdown, especially for these two causes which are both very close to my heart, for opening these safe rooms, also continuing to support with washbags, they make a huge difference”
Tracey Clements, Chief Operating Officer for Boots, said:
“We know that our pharmacies have long been a place where people can turn for help and advice on their local high streets. It’s at times like these when our 2,400 stores in communities across the UK take on increased value as a place of safety that’s freely accessible in the local community for those who need it. We are very grateful for Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall’s visit to our store in Piccadilly, and for her continued support.”
Lyndsey Dearlove, Head of UK SAYS NO MORE, Hestia, added:
“Restrictions due to Covid-19 have left many victims of domestic abuse trapped and isolated from friends, family and other support networks. Our Safe Spaces initiative, first launched with Boots, provides a vital lifeline which will continue to be needed even as lockdown eases.
“Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall has already done much to raise awareness of domestic abuse and we hope her visit today will help more victims of domestic abuse to know that they can come to a Safe Space to reach support.”