Dundee Family Lawyer

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'Law doesn’t protect us’ say domestic violence victims

The Domestic Violence Law Reform Campaign has released a report calling for the Government to close gaps in the law around domestic violence that allow perpetrators to avoid prosecution for their abusive behaviour.

The Campaign, made up of Paladin, the national stalking advocacy service; the Sara Charlton Charitable Foundation; and national domestic violence charity Women’s Aid, are urging the reforms in light of a survey demonstrating the inability of the current system to respond appropriately to intimate partner violence.

The survey revealed:

  • 88% said the criminal justice system didn’t take psychological harm into account and 94% felt that mental cruelty can sometimes be worse than physical violence.
  • 57% who reported to police reported more than three instances of domestic violence, but 81% said the criminal justice system did not take any pattern of abuse into account.
  • 98% of victims felt that reform of the law and practice around domestic violence is needed.
  • 100% felt that the police, Crime Prosecution Service, Judges and Magistrates should have to complete mandatory training into the dynamics and impact of domestic violence.

In light of these figures, the campaigners are calling for ‘coercive control’, patterns of behaviour and causing psychological harm to be criminalised, to ensure the statutory response to domestic violence reflects both the Home Office definition and the reality of violent relationships.

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The marriage gap between rich and poor
Key event figures published for 2013

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