Study finds domestic violence could be stopped sooner
- 25 Mar
On average victims of abuse for almost three years before receiving the help they need even though they are often in contact with professionals at the time.
A study of the largest database of domestic violence victims in the UK has found that victims are abused for almost three years before receiving any help and many are subjected to over 50 incidents during that time, reports the Guardian.
The figures from the charity SafeLives show that almost a quarter of "high-risk" victims had been to A&E with injuries sustained during violence abuse, with some going as many as 15 times before having the problem addressed.
The SafeLives database has over 35,000 cases of adults experiencing domestic abuse since 2009 and it has found that 85% of victims had been in contact with an average of five professionals in the year prior to an "effective" help from independent domestic violence advisers or other specialist practitioner.
"Time and time again no one spots domestic abuse, even when victims and their children come into contact with many different public agencies. It's not acceptable that victims should have to try to get help repeatedly. This leaves victims living in fear and danger and risks lifelong harm to their children," said Diana Barran, the chief executive of SafeLives, which was previously called Co-ordinated Action Against Domestic Abuse (Caada).
Barran said the study was "more shocking evidence" that domestic violence could often be stopped earlier. "Every conversation with a professional represents a missed opportunity to get victims and their children the help they need," she said.
SafeLives believes that there are at least 100,000 victims at high risk of murder or serious injury in England and Wales. Of this figure 94% are women.
The study found that victims and often their children lived with abuse for an average of 2.7 years. Three-quarters reported abuse to the police, and 23% went to A&E because of violence sustained in abusive relationships.
Frances Wedgwood, a GP in Lambeth who provides training on domestic violence to health workers said "Domestic violence is still a very hidden problem and in my experience women do not disclose if they are not asked," she said. "We need to get better at asking people directly if they need help."
Vera Baird, former solicitor general and the current police and crime commissioner for Northumberland, said professionals needed help and training to have the confidence to deal with domestic violence.
"Domestic abuse is not a one-off violent attack. It is deliberate long-term use of coercion to control every part of the partner's life. Violence, sexual abuse, financial control, constant criticism, isolating from family and friends are all familiar tools," she said.
"People in that situation do not find it easy to speak and need those who could help to be alert. The alternative is what these figures suggest: victims and their families locked unnecessarily into cruelty and ill-treatment for years."
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions
- 08 Sep
People in Leeds call to tackle domestic violence
Leaders from private, public and third sectors gathered for the Voice of Leeds Summit and discussed what they could do to tackle domestic violence, reports the Yorkshire Evening Post.Over the past...
- 04 Sep
Plans to tackle domestic violence in Bury
Research by Bury Council’s domestic violence and abuse steering group has found that there was an average of ten incidents a day in the past year from April 2015, reports the Bury Times.Town hall...
- 28 Aug
Domestic violence levels in Northern Ireland at highest
Police have said that the number of reports of domestic violence are continuing to rise, and from April 2014 to April 2015 there was a 5.6% increase, report U TV. Ulster University is set to release...
- 16 Jul
Welfare reforms could make it harder for domestic violence victims to leave their homes
Service director for Newcastle Women’s Aid Elaine Langshawe has said that welfare reforms are making it harder for domestic violence victims to leave their partners, reports the Chronicle Live.Ms...
- 15 Jul
Support for domestic violence survivors provided by local charities
A contract worth £1.2m a year has been obtained by Women’s Aid Integrated Services, Nottinghamshire Women’s Aid and Equation, reports Impact Nottingham. This contract uses funds from...
- 13 Jul
New fund to support victims of domestic violence
The fund will be open to proposals from local partnerships that show how the needs of victims are able to be met in innovative ways, reports 24dash. It has also been revealed that there will be a...
- 03 Jul
Domestic violence campaign launched in Sandwell
Run by charity Fry Housing Trust, Sandwell Council and Sandwell’s Domestic Abuse Strategic Partnership, the ‘Brighter Futures’ scheme will be running over the next two years, reports ITV...
- 24 Jun
Wolverhampton police see thousands of domestic violence reports
It has been reported that an average of sixteen incidents of domestic violence were recorded each day in Wolverhampton over the last year, reports the Express and Star.Of the 5,900 incidents reported...
- 15 Jun
UK’s approach to domestic violence called ‘incoherent’
A leaked copy of an official report by the UN special rapporteur on violence against women, Rashida Manjoo, has called for an urgent inquiry into Yarl’s Wood and a focus on repeated allegations...
- 10 Jun
Domestic violence to be highlighted in new film by students and police in Sunderland
The first year media students and third year drama students at the University of Sunderland have created four short films that cover financial, emotional, physical and sexual forms of domestic abuse,...
How to Fund Housing Support and Social Care Services Good clear delivery of some complicated information. Jaqui Smith - Young Womens Housing Project