Domestic abuse victims urged to switch off Government's emergency alert system - The Solihull Observer

Domestic abuse victims urged to switch off Government's emergency alert system

Solihull Editorial 29th Mar, 2023   0

DOMESTIC abuse victims who have a concealed phone hidden from their abuser can switch off the government’s new emergency alert system.

On April 23, all 4G and 5G compatible phones will receive a test message on the system which will include a 10-second alarm and vibration – regardless of if users have the volume switched on or off.

The alert system will be used going forward to warn residents of major weather events or any other danger to life, health or property.

But concerns have been raised that those who have secret phones hidden from their abusers could be put at increased risk should the alert go off.




The West Midlands Victims’ Commissioner Nicky Brennan and Assistant Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Tom McNeil have revealed how the system could be turned off by people if they are a victim of domestic abuse and relied on a secret phone.

Ms Brennan said: “I know first hand of many victims of domestic abuse who have a concealed phone as a lifeline, allowing them to keep in touch with friends and family or to be used in an emergency.


“While the emergency alert system is understandable, it is also vital we raise awareness that this can be switched off for those who need it.

“I urge anybody who has a concealed phone for their own safety to switch off these alerts.”

To opt out on an iPhone:

Search settings for ‘emergency alerts’ and turn off Severe alerts and Emergency alerts.

If this does not work, users should contact their device manufacturer.

To opt out on Android phones and tablets:

Search settings for ‘emergency alerts’ and turn off Severe alerts and Emergency alerts.

On Huawei devices running EMUI 11 or older, people should search their settings for ‘emergency alerts’ and turn off “Extreme threats”, “Severe threats” and “Show amber alerts”

If this does not work, people can contact their device manufacturer

Click here for more information.

 

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