A campaign enabling people who might feel uneasy on a date in pubs and clubs to discreetly approach staff and request assistance is being rolled out.
Available at participating venues throughout Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland the ‘Ask for Angela’ initiative aims to provide customers with a way to remove themselves from an uncomfortable situation while on a date.
The ‘Ask for Angela’ phrase can be used to gain assistance from staff members in order to be separated from the company of someone with whom they feel uncomfortable or unsafe due to that person’s actions, words or behaviour.
By asking for ‘Angela’, an individual is alerting staff that they require help. They will be taken aside, or to a safer location, so they can speak in confidence to that staff member about what assistance they need.
Options available to staff include: offering to call a taxi for the individual; providing a safe place for them to contact their friends or family; or requesting that the individual causing the distress leaves the venue.
Ivan Ould, lead member of community safety for the County Council said: “Ask for Angela is a simple yet effective scheme designed to provide support and reassurance for members of the public if they are feeling vulnerable while out on a date.
“Perhaps their date is not what they seemed, or things are starting to feel weird. This scheme enables them to get away safely, with minimum fuss and hopefully prevent situations from escalating into something more serious.”
Officers from Council Licensing and Community Safety teams will be delivering posters to advertise the service to venues across the area. They will be placed in the toilets of those establishments, so as to be discreet.
Sergeant Marianne Hooper from Leicestershire Police added: “We support any scheme that helps to make people feel safer and would urge licensees across Leicestershire to adopt it and let their customers know that they can get support and help from bar staff if they need it.”