Domestic abusers face crackdown in raft of new government measures

The UK government have announced the toughest measures yet for domestic abusers who will now be more closely monitored and electronically tagged.

Police forces will be required to treat violence against women and girls as a national threat – designating it as important to tackle as terrorism. More abusers will also be recorded on the Violent and Sex Offender Register.woman in black and white plaid shirt

Under the government’s proposals, the law will be changed so that police, prison, and probation services have to jointly manage offenders who have been sentenced to 12 months or more imprisonment or a suspended sentence in an attempt to better protect the public.

For the first time, new civil orders are also being trialled in three areas of the UK which could see abusers electronically tagged and made to attend behaviour change programmes.

In addition to helping take offenders off the streets, the government have also invested up to £8.4m over two years for victim support programmes.

Similarly, the ‘Ask for Ani’ codeword scheme, which allows victims or those at risk of abuse to discreetly signal if they need help, is to be introduced in jobcentres around England.

Announcing the plans, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, said: ‘No woman or girl should ever have to feel unsafe in her home or community and I am determined to stamp out these appalling crimes.

‘The Ask for Ani scheme provides a lifeline for anyone suffering from domestic abuse and we will continue to expand the scheme so that more people can access it, including piloting this service in the first jobcentres.

‘As well as extra support for victims, we’re making it a priority for the police to tackle violence against women and girls and toughening up the way offenders are managed – preventing more of these crimes from happening in the first place and bringing more perpetrators to justice.’

On top of this, the National Police Chief’s Council has introduced a new risk assessment tool in England and Wales which helps police forces identify domestic abusers most likely to commit the greatest harm.

According to the Office of National Statistics, an estimated 2.4 million people in England and Wales were victims of domestic abuse in the last year and around one in five homicides are related to it.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman said: ‘Domestic abuse is a despicable crime that leads to people’s closest relationships becoming a frightening existence of torment, pain, fear, and anxiety.

‘It is completely unacceptable and as home secretary I will do everything in my power to stop it.’

In recent months the issue of domestic abuse perpetrated by police officers and staff has also made headlines – the case of Sarah Everard dominated media outlets and created a national uproar. 

In the Metropolitan Police alone, the force is investigating 1,000 sexual and domestic abuse claims involving about 800 of its officers.

Additionally, the case of Brianna Ghey – a transgender woman who was brutally stabbed to death in a village park because of her gender – tragically made headlines this month, showcasing the new government measures which have been announced today are needed more than ever. 

Photo by Sinitta Leunen and Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona


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