“Ask for Angela” campaign offers support for pub patrons

Restaurants and pubs in Oundle have started to participate in the ‘Ask for Angela’ campaign, which seeks to help people who feel uncomfortable or need protection whilst on a date or meeting. Places such as the Onkar Restaurant, Brew Babu, The Talbot Hotel and the George Inn have introduced the scheme to their employees in order for them to be able to help any visitors who might feel unsafe.

The campaign was created by Hayley Child, a sexual violence and abuse strategy co-ordinator for Lincolnshire, who said that she wanted to “provide reassurance that there is support available if needed”.

Angela was picked as the “safe word” as it is a play on words “guardian angel”. The campaign has been warmly greeted across social media from both the general public and celebrities such as
Ashton Kutcher.

The campaign could potentially save both men and women from situations which could become dangerous. It functions as a safety net for customers: if feeling vulnerable or uncomfortable, they can go to the bar and “Ask for Angela”. The employees will then either order a taxi home for the person, take them to a safe room in the restaurant, or just keep an eye on them.

The Talbot Hotel general manager said: “It is a really useful tool for people and is recognised throughout the hotel. We have 15 hotels within The Coaching Inn Group and every single hotel is signed up and supporting it.”

A member of staff in the George Inn said: “We have posters in the ladies’ toilets and all staff are made aware of the policy. There is a form behind the bar for staff to see. We have never had to use it, but if anyone feels uncomfortable they can approach the bar.”

With its successful introduction to a few of the social hubs in town, the scheme aims to spread to all pubs and restaurants to ensure a safer space for those who need security.

Grace Maund
December 2018