REGINA -- The Saskatchewan government is funding $421,000 over the next three years to address interpersonal violence through the 211 phone line and web portal.

The funding will be provided to the United Way, which operates the existing phone line, according to a news release.

The government said it will help staff provide additional training on connecting people who have experienced interpersonal violence, including sexual and domestic violence.

As well, the website will be updated to make it more comprehensive and user-friendly, the government said.

 “We want to make it as easy as possible for Saskatchewan people to access interpersonal violence supports,” Justice Minister and Attorney General Don Morgan said in a news release.

 “When people are experiencing interpersonal violence and abuse, they need a system that can quickly provide them with the help and information they need to ensure their own safety.  We have an opportunity to do that through this expansion of 211,” he said.

The government said people have had a hard time reporting and escaping interpersonal violence because of the lack of information and resources.

Therefore, the updated website and phone line will make it easier for people to access services and information at any time, the province said.

“United Way is dedicated to creating opportunities for people to improve their lives and build a better future,” United Way Regina CEO Robyn Edwards-Bentz said, in the news release.

“Interpersonal violence and its effects is an un-ignorable issue.  It not only impacts individuals and families, but also threatens community safety for all.  This funding will ensure Saskatchewan citizens can find help when they need it most,” she said.

In 2018, approximately ten per cent of all calls (including text, live chat and email) to the 211 line were related to interpersonal violence.

Additional information and resources related to interpersonal violence and abuse can be found here and here.