Public consultation on strengthening the law on domestic abuse

Published 20 August 2014

On 20 August, the Home Secretary launched a public consultation to seek views on whether the current law on domestic abuse needs to be strengthened to offer better protection for victims. The consultation will run for 8 weeks, closing on 15 October 2014.

An appalling crime

Domestic abuse is an appalling crime. It is the worst possible violation of the trust that those in close relationships place in one another. It shatters the lives of its victims, and in some cases, leads to tragic and untimely deaths. That is why tackling domestic violence and abuse has been one of this Government’s top priorities.

In recent years much has been done to improve the response to domestic abuse. The Home Office’s ‘This is Abuse’ campaign helps young people recognise abusive behaviours. The national roll-out of the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme, also known as Clare’s Law, and Domestic Violence Protection Orders allows the police to better protect victims of domestic abuse.

Different types of domestice abuse

Domestic abuse is not just about violence. Coercive and controlling behaviour can be harder to recognise but can have an equally devastating impact on its victims. In March 2013 the Government definition of domestic abuse was expanded to capture non-violent behaviour. The Home Office now wants to hear your views on whether the law needs to be strengthened to keep pace with these developments.

This consultation does not prejudge the outcome or next steps. We want to hear the views of victims and professionals who support victims, such as the police, to understand how we can offer the best possible protection against domestic abuse. You can find more information on the consultation and submit your responses on GOV.UK

If you have a concern about someone you know, or someone you are in a relationship with you should contact your police force on 101. You should always dial 999 in an emergency.

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