The Duchess of Cornwall has expressed her support for the expansion of the Rail to Refuge program, which offers free train travel to people fleeing abusive relationships.
Camilla warned in a video message that the lockdown was life-threatening for domestic violence survivors.
The Duchess, who has long been campaigning against domestic violence, urged those in need of help to turn to Women’s Aid for support and access to the initiative.
She said on the message, “Lockdown was difficult for everyone, but it was life-threatening for domestic violence survivors.
“I am pleased to hear that the UK railways are extending the Rail to Refuge program longer to allow those fleeing domestic violence free travel to a safe haven.
“If you need help, contact Frauenhilfe for support and access to the Rail to Refuge program.”
The free rail travel system has been expanded for the foreseeable future after reports showed that abuse had worsened during the coronavirus restrictions.
The initiative was launched by Southeastern in September 2019 and the Great Western Railway joined in March 2020.
All UK train operators have partnered with the Women’s Aid charity to participate in the program on April 9th last year.
It was originally supposed to last 12 weeks, but has been extended to the end of March 2021 and has now been extended further with no set end date.
Camilla’s message was shared by the Rail Delivery Group.
Domestic violence survivors who wish to access the program or require other assistance can contact Women’s Aid through the live chat service, which is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. contact: https: / /chat.womensaid.org.uk