Good news in the fight against domestic violence! Local councils have been allocated £125 million by the government to provide domestic abuse support for victims and their children. Amid a surge in domestic violence cases during COVID-19 related national lockdowns, the government is stepping up efforts to tackle the issue.
Here at Holland Family Law, we were delighted to hear news that £125 million has been allocated to local authorities to help tackle the scourge of domestic violence. Unfortunately, with each national lockdown, cases of domestic violence have inevitably increased while access to domestic abuse support for victims has been virtually cut off.
Many victims have been left in the terrifying situation of being stuck in doors with their abuser with very little opportunity to seek help. Something needed to be done and the government is responding.
How will the funding aid domestic abuse support?
The £125 million allocated to local authorities across England will provide a pathway for victims and their children to access the life-saving support they so desperately need. This includes advocacy, counselling, legal advice, safe accommodation, therapy and more.
Councils will now have a responsibility to provide domestic abuse support for victims as part of the government’s landmark Domestic Abuse Bill. The duty placed on councils will come into effect later this year – subject to the Domestic Abuse Bill becoming law.
The funding for local councils forms part of a wider, £40 million package to support rape and domestic violence victims.
Amid the pandemic, the government has stepped up its efforts to support society’s most vulnerable with an unprecedented £76 million pledged to ensure that vital services remain accessible – including refuges, helplines and counselling.
The government has a long-term strategy for tackling domestic abuse and the latest round of funding follows £6 million that was allocated to councils in 2020 to prepare for their new duty.
Government steps up domestic abuse support
In recent months, the government has stepped up to tackle abuse, which ministers describe as a ‘heinous crime’, on all fronts. A series of funding injections have provided another big step toward tackling domestic abuse.
Meanwhile, the recent launch of the ‘Ask for Ani’ codeword scheme provides another arm of domestic abuse support. The scheme enables victims to seek help from the police or other support services through their local pharmacy.
2,300 Boots stores and a nearly 300 independent pharmacies are part of the ‘Ask for Ani’ scheme.
Holland Family Law playing its part
Here at HFL, we welcome increased efforts to provide domestic abuse support for victims. As for our part, our dedicated domestic abuse department has helped many victims to escape the trauma they face, offering advice discreetly to put legally binding measures in place that prevent further abuse.
We listen, we understand and we care about protecting those who have suffered years of abuse, with the aim of bringing hope of a brighter future.