A fresh report published this morning by the charity ‘Safe Lives’, has produced the following findings:
- 85% of people who suffer domestic violence, suffer on average 50 incidents over a period of three years before doing something about it.
- 23% of victims have been to Accident and Emergency with injuries.
- Professionals miss an average five chances to help victims.
- Victims suffer for around three years before getting help.
- One in four women is abused during her lifetime.
- One in six men is abused during his lifetime.
Domestic Violence legal definition
Such violence and abuse is not limited to just physical abuse. It also covers psychological abuse.
The damage inflicted by coercive behaviour in relationships is “too often overlooked,” according to the Shadow Home Secretary. Yvette Cooper welcomed the launch of a consultation on strengthening the domestic violence law, but said the Government still needs to do more. She stated last year during a television interview:
‘The criminal justice system needs to recognise the damage done by repeated psychological abuse and coercive control which is too often overlooked — the Government’s agreement to this consultation is a welcome tribute to those who have campaigned hard for change.But Theresa May just isn’t doing enough to reverse the backwards slide in action against domestic violence or support for victims on her watch.Prosecutions and convictions as a proportion of recorded domestic crime are falling. And over the last four years over 10,000 perpetrators of domestic violence have been handed only community resolutions, with many simply being asked to apologise to their victim’.
The incidents of men suffering domestic violence has increased. This is not likely to be an actual increase in violence, but moreover, a change in attitude and perceptions, and a decrease in the stigma attached to men reporting this crime.
What to do if you are the subject of domestic abuse
If you have suffered domestic violence, it is appropriate to report this matter to the Police. There are specialist teams who deal with domestic violence.
Do NOT, however, abuse the system and use it as a tool if you are in the midst of a divorce, to point-score against your estranged spouse. Once an offence is reported, as a matter of Public Policy, domestic violence teams in most cases will prosecute irrespective of you wishing not to proceed to prosecute. Sometimes, the damage caused by false reporting and wasting Police time, is irreparable to the children caught up in the dispute.
Please be aware of a variety of Charities who can assist and counsel you, including of course, Safer Lives.
You may also need a Non-Molestation Order, to prevent your attacker from causing you or your children further harm or damage, and an Occupation Order to remove the alleged offender from your home.
If this is the case, please get in touch with Gemma Antoniou.
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