Tougher laws for abusers says domestic violence campaigners
- 05 Mar
A survey of victims show that the vast many believe police and courts ignore psychological harm and patterns of abuse.
Following a survey of victims showing that perpetrators often escape prosecution campaigners are calling for the law on domestic violence to be tightened.
An online survey by Paladin, the national stalking advocacy, and two domestic violence charities, Women's Aid and the Sara Charlton Foundation, of 258 domestic violence victims found that 88% felt that the legal system didn't take psychological harm into account and 94% said that mental cruelty was worse than physical harm.
The survey also revealed that 57% of victims who went to the police reported over three incidents of domestic violence, however 81% said that the police courts did not take any pattern of abuse into account, reports the Guardian.
The majority of respondents felt that a reform of the law and practice on domestic violence was needed and that police, prosecutors, judges and magistrates should have to undergo mandatory training in the dynamics and impact of domestic violence.
The people behind the survey want the law changed to make "coercive control", patterns of behaviour and causing psychological harm to become criminal offences. They believe it is necessary to ensure the response of the criminal justice system to domestic violence reflects both a new wider Home Office definition which includes coercive control and the reality of violent relationships.
Laura Richards, director of Paladin, said: "It is possible for the law to criminalise a course of conduct and move beyond physical injury. Stalking laws now allow the criminal justice system to take account of patterns of controlling behaviour after a relationship has ended, but often this is far too late for victims as the behaviour has been allowed to escalate. The legislative framework must change to take account of a course of conduct, target patterns and address a broad range of harm and focus more on early intervention and prevention."
Polly Neate, chief executive of Women's Aid, said: "These survey results clearly reflect what our member services have been telling us for a long time: that the criminal justice focus on individual incidents of physical violence cannot reflect the ongoing psychological harm caused by coercive control in intimate relationships."
It has also been revlaled today through a survey by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, that about a third of all women in the EU have experienced either physical or sexual violence since the age of 15.
The survey is based on interviews with 42,000 women and asked women about their experiences of physical, sexual and psychological violence, at home and in the workplace. It also included stalking, sexual harassment and violence in childhood, reports the BBC.
"What emerges is a picture of extensive abuse that affects many women's lives, but is systematically under-reported to the authorities," said Morten Kjaerum, director of the Agency for Fundamental Rights.
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions
Image source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1080946
- 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