A Brandon firm has created a short, hard-hitting video to be screened in Bury St Edmunds next month during a conference on coercive control - a new domestic abuse offence.
With new legislation on ‘coercive and controlling behaviour’ being announced this week, the aim of the video is to open a dialogue about the significance of the issue - the emotional and psychological effect it has on victims - and raise awareness.
The 60-second film – Living on Eggshells - was created by Brandon-based video production company Playhouse Films and features Brandon-based actress Bernadette Lemon.
It took a month to make, which included a day of filming and post-production work to create the right tension and aesthetic in order to bring the issue of coercive control to the forefront.
Sean Crotty, director of Playhouse Films, said: “After discussing the initial concept and the objective of the video, Playhouse Films brainstormed ideas and tried to put themselves in the mind of the victim - what did it feel like to be them and how could that be best expressed on film?
“Seven initial concepts were discussed, but it was felt that Living on Eggshells was the perfect fit, as everyone the company had spoken to about the issue would use that or a similar metaphor to describe their treatment.”
The video will be screened at The Apex, in Charter Square, Bury, during the Conference on Coercive Control which will take place between 9.30am and 5pm on Tuesday, October 6.
Mr Crotty said: “The Conference on Coercive Control is a ground-breaking event and the first of it’s kind. We’re so pleased to be a part of it and we know it’s such an important issue.”
Co-director Douglas Wright added: “We hope there will be more events of its kind so that the Conference on Coercive Control gets seen all over the country, and even globally. The issue affects so many more people than you realise. The message needs to get out that the law is changing and people can now seek help.”
The film is also available on YouTube and organisers are encouraging people to Tweet it using the hashtags #DomesticViolenceDoesntAlwaysShow and #CoerciveControl so that others can join in with the conversation.
The conference next month will see experts from the legal profession, counselling services and domestic violence organisations tackle aspects of this area of domestic violence, recognition of which is now growing.
Detective Chief Inspector Steve Jackson, National Domestic Abuse Coordinator for the College of Policing, has also agreed to join the line-up of speakers at the event.
Conference coordinator Min Grob said: “Since the recent release of police guidelines by College of Policing on how to identify coercive control, the need for more awareness has become urgent. For this reason, I have reduced the ticket prices for the conference so that as many people as possible can learn about coercive control. You can now order two tickets for the price of one.”
Anyone interested in attending the conference can purchase tickets through The Apex. They cost £60 for two, £10 of which will be donated to Bury Women’s Aid Centre. Visit www.theapex.co.uk
Charities interested in sending delegates can benefit from special rates by emailing the organisers at firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about coercive control go to www.coercivecontrol.co.uk