PCC Marc Jones welcomes new government bill to tackle Domestic Abuse.
A new government bill to tackle domestic abuse has been welcomed by the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner.
The development comes after a consultation on the issue last year and aims to make the prosecution of offenders easier, whilst providing more support for victims and their families.
The bill includes the creation of:
• The first ever definition of domestic abuse, recognising that there are many types of abuse that can be suffered, including economic abuse and controlling and manipulative non-physical abuse.
• A Domestic Abuse Commissioner to drive the response to domestic abuse issues.
• New Domestic Abuse Protection Notices and Domestic Abuse Protection Orders to further protect victims and place restrictions on the actions of offenders.
• The prohibition of cross-examination of victims by their abusers in the family courts.
• Automatic eligibility for special measures to support more victims to give evidence in the criminal courts.
Economic abuse will be recognised for the first time as a type of domestic abuse, covering controlling circumstances in which victims have finances withheld, are denied access to employment or transport, or are forced to take out loans and enter into other financial contracts.
This recognition will improve understanding among frontline professionals, law enforcement officers and prosecutors, so we can take action more quickly and effectively to better support victims.
PCC Marc Jones, who acts as the Deputy Victims lead for the national Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, has embraced the publication. He said:
“It is great to have commitment from the Government to bring forward this very important legislation to protect vulnerable people of all genders who suffer the abhorrent yet all too common crime of domestic abuse.
“We have seen a raft of initiatives and legislative changes to protect victims, survivors and the vulnerable and I am very pleased to welcome this; the latest hugely positive step forward to protecting our communities.”
Minister for Crime, Safeguarding and Vulnerability, Victoria Atkins, responding to the bill publication said:
“I have heard absolutely heartbreaking accounts of victims whose lives have been ripped apart because of physical, emotional or economic abuse they have suffered by someone close to them.
“The draft Domestic Abuse Bill recognises the complex nature of these horrific crimes and puts the needs of victims and their families at the forefront.
“This government is absolutely committed to shining a light on domestic abuse to ensure this hidden crime does not remain in the shadows.”
If you have been affected by Domestic Abuse, you can contact EDAN Lincs by calling 01522 510041 or visiting www.edanlincs.org.uk.
EDAN Lincs provide support and assistance to women, men and children in Lincolnshire suffering, or fleeing from domestic abuse.