Father welcomes Clare's Law rollout

A father from Yorkshire whose daughter was murdered by an ex-boyfriend has welcomed a law allowing access to a partner's background.

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New law shows Government 'takes emotional abuse seriously'

Government plans to strengthen domestic violence laws to better support victims of psychological and emotional abuse are partly about sending a message "that this is a crime, we are taking it seriously", a Home Office minister told Good Morning Britain.

Norman Baker MP said this would give victims the confidence to come forwards.

Damage done by psychological abuse 'too often overlooked'

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.

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.

– Yvette Cooper

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Domestic violence law to cover psychological abuse

Abuse
Government plans could see the law on domestic violence strengthened to cover non-physical abuse. Credit: PA

Coercive and controlling behaviour in relationships could become just as criminal as physical abuse, under a proposed new law.

The Government have put a new offence of 'domestic abuse' out for consultation.

Launched by Home Secretary Theresa May, the consultation will consider whether the current law needs to be strengthened to better protect victims of psychological and emotional abuse.

The offence will cover behaviour such as threatening a partner with violence, cutting them off from friends and family, or refusing them access to money.

Under existing law, intimidation of this kind is covered by legislation that covers stalking and harassment, but this does not explicitly apply to intimate relationships.

Read: 'Crisis point' as domestic violence refuges close

DPP 'incredibly proud' of CPS domestic violence work

The Director of Public Prosecutions has said she is "incredibly proud" of the rise in the conviction rate for domestic violence in recent years.

Alison Saunders said: "I hope victims of these terrible offences will take some confidence from this, and that perpetrators will take note."

She said she was pleased so many cases were now settled by offenders pleading guilty, meaning "the vast majority of victims are spared having to give evidence in court".

She also hailed the high conviction rate for offences involving women and girls, saying: ""I am incredibly proud of what the CPS has achieved in recent years in tackling violence against women and girls."

Record convictions for domestic violence last year

A record three in four prosecutions for domestic violence last year ended in a conviction, the Crown Prosecution has revealed.

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, will later announce that in 74.6% of cases defendants either admitted the offences or were found guilty.

The total number of convictions in 2013/14 was just under 60,000, up almost 10% on the figure for 2012/13.

The longer term picture shows a steady rise in conviction rates, which have gone from 59.7% in 2005 to just under 75% in the last year.

According to CPS figures, domestic violence - which covers a wide range of abusive behaviours between partners, spouses and family members - now makes up over a tenth of the Service's casework.

Refuge: Domestic violence happens all year round

Refuge chief executive Sandra Horley said it was important to recognise that domestic abuse happens every day of the year, and is not caused by football.

Refuge chief executive Sandra Horley. Credit: Press Association

Read: Domestic abuse 'incidents up 38% when England lose'

Speaking as a police forces across the UK launched campaigns encouraging victims to speak out, she said:

"It's important to be clear - football does not cause domestic violence. Lots of men who abuse women have no interest in sport whatsoever, and many men who are avid football fans never lay a finger on their partners.

"Domestic violence happens all year round - whether the England football team is playing or not. [...]

"The police should be encouraging women to reach out for support every day of the year, not just during the World Cup."

Listen: 8-year-old in frantic 999 call to report domestic abuse

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Domestic abuse 'incidents up 38% when England lose'

Research from the University of Lancashire showed the threat of violence increased whether England lost or won.
Research from the University of Lancaster showed the threat of violence increased whether England lost or won. Credit: Press Association

Researchers at Lancaster University found that incidents of domestic abuse rose significantly during the World Cup tournament.

Read: Domestic violence warning ahead of the World Cup

Levels of domestic abuse rose by 26% when England won or drew during the last three World Cups, while there was a 38% spike when the national team lost, the research found.

More: Domestic violence set to soar during the World Cup

Domestic violence set to soar during the World Cup

Police across the UK are preparing for an increase in domestic violence over the coming month as the World Cup tournament kicks off on Thursday.

Increased alcohol abuse may be one of the factors that leads to the hike in domestic violence during the World Cup. Credit: Press Association

Research suggests the threat of domestic violence increases significantly throughout the competition, particularly when England play.

More: England squad arrive in Brazil ahead of World Cup

More: Domestic violence news

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8-year-old in frantic 999 call to report domestic abuse

Police have released a recording of the moment an eight-year-old boy called 999 to tell them his mother was being battered by her partner.

Warning: You may find the contents of this video distressing

The call was released by Greater Manchester Police as part of the launch of a major campaign against domestic violence before the World Cup starts.

The boy can be heard pleading ‘help, help it’s my mum and dad’ as the woman screams for help in the background and another child can be heard crying.

Greater Manchester Police say they went to the scene but neither parent would give any information about the incident and said they did not want any police involvement.

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Domestic violence warning ahead of the World Cup

Greater Manchester Police are urging the public to show domestic abuse the red card this World Cup.

The facts:

  • In 2010 GMP recorded 353 incidents the day England were knocked out
  • 5,897 emergency calls were made over that 24 hours
  • 43% up on what police would normally expect to receive

Partners the North West Ambulance Service recorded a 34 percent increase in the number of assaults after England were thrown out in the 2010 games.

It also saw a 21 percent increase in the number of 999 calls compared to the previous weekend that year.

In previous tournaments we have seen the combination of expectations, emotions, warm weather and alcohol consumption result in an increase in 999 calls for assaults.

We urge people to think first, drink sensibly and remain aware of their actions so they can enjoy the matches in good spirit and avoid harm to themselves and other people.

– Derek Cartwright, North West Ambulance Service

For more information or to report abuse contact police on 101 or the Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0161 6367525.

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