There have been important changes made to Refuge's National Domestic Helpline, to increase access for women who might otherwise face barriers in seeking support.
British Sign Language access
Deaf women can now receive free, confidential support from our National Domestic Abuse Helpline Advisers via qualified British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters. Refuge developed this service in partnership with SignHealth, which provides the only specialist domestic abuse service delivered in BSL. Women can follow the BSL symbol on the National Domestic Abuse Helpline website, watch a BSL video that explains the service and how to access it safely, then simply click on a button to connect with an interpreter. There's no sign-up required.
BSL interpretation is available 10am - 6pm, Monday - Friday (some deaf women may also want to access a Live Chat, which is open from 3pm until 10pm on weekdays).
Freephone 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247
Refuge has also translated all the content on the National Domestic Abuse Helpline website into Polish, Bengali, and Spanish, with more languages planned. This includes information on spotting the signs of domestic abuse, supporting a friend, safety planning, rights and options and how women can receive support from the Helpline. Users can change the language by clicking the globe in the top right-hand corner on desktop, and in the menu list on mobile.
If you have any questions about these changes, please contact Helpline Manager – National Domestic Abuse Helpline, Charlotte Eastop on