Bristol, Avon and Somerset Police have warned that, as with the 2010 World Cup, the Euros starting today may lead to an increase in domestic violence.
During the last World Cup, domestic abuse was a third higher than normal the day after England crashed out of the tournament, 4-1 to Germany. On the day after England's group matches against USA, Algeria and Slovenia, reported abuse rose by 22, 18 and 24 per cent respectively, despite the fact they did not lose any of those games. Such statistics have prompted the Bristol area police to launch a campaign aimed at protecting wives, girlfriends and families.
The police have said that posters and leaflets are being circulated in doctors' surgeries, community centres, shops and other public places giving details of a domestic abuse helpline. Officers will also be visiting known households to offer help and support to victims and remind offenders how seriously they take domestic violence.
Detective Inspector Peter Highway, of the Public Protection Unit, said:
Although the Euros have brought particular focus to football related domestic violence, charities specialising in the issue have warned that this is an issue that persists all year round, as a result of smaller games not just when England is playing.