Buckinghamshire prepares for new legislation on domestic abuse
The Safer Bucks Partnership hosted a conference attended by more than 150 police officers, charities, NHS staff, children and adult social workers on 5 February in Aylesbury.
The conference was held to look at and discuss the forthcoming legislation on domestic abuse, which will strengthen the legal definitions so that a range of abusive behaviours – such as coercive control – can be more effectively prosecuted.
Speakers included a published forensic homicide researcher, advisors to the Home Office, and national experts on stalking and domestic abuse.
The impact of domestic violence is estimated at £66bn nationally, making up 16% of the Crown Prosecution Service’s caseload in 2016-17. With 11,870 reported cases of domestic violence abuse in Buckinghamshire last year, with each case estimated to cost about £34,000, this is a considerable cost to public services as well as a blight on the lives of victims across the county.
Noel Brown, County Council Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Public Health, “I am so pleased with the excellent attendance at the event and the informative discussions we had. We hope the outcomes will help us to develop strategies to protect the victims of domestic violence, and help prevent the harm that also results for the victim’s family and the wider community.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing coercive control or relationship abuse, support is available through Victims First call 0300 1234 148 or go online at www.victims-first.org.uk/coercive-control