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March 8th 2021

CICA

Government Announces £19 Million Fund to Tackle Domestic Abuse

Nicola Bailey-Gibbs

Nicola Bailey-Gibbs

Associate, Criminal Injuries and Civil Liberties

Government Announces £19 Million Fund to Tackle Domestic Abuse

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a £19million support package for domestic abuse programmes in the recent budget.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a £19million support package for domestic abuse programmes in the recent budget.

Mr Sunak rightly pointed out that the increase in domestic violence cases was one of the ‘hidden tragedies’ of lockdown, resulting in a surge in demand for services. The increase in demand for services has also come at a time when charities have barely been able to fundraise.

£15m of the £19m budget will however be spent on working with perpetrators to stop re-offending, to allow specific interventions to respond to stalking and to improve responses to young people who suffer abuse. Whilst this is obviously tremendously important and welcome, it begs the question – should this come at the expense of funding lifesaving support for the victims?

Women’s Aid suggest that, with a funding shortfall of £220m, women and children are being turned away from potentially lifesaving support and Leeds Charity Inspire North describe the amount as ‘paltry’.

It is understood that some of the remaining £4m funding will help to pilot a network of ‘respite rooms’ to provide specialist support to vulnerable homeless women. Given the increasing number of domestic violence cases in England, this sum does seem somewhat lacking.

At Hudgell Solicitors, as part of our work in assisting clients with claims for Criminal Injuries Compensation we see a worrying number of domestic abuse cases, so whilst any funding the government can provide is welcome it seems that further and substantial sums are very much needed.

If you have been the victim of domestic abuse and you require advice on making a claim for Criminal Injuries Compensation, contact us on 0808 231 6075.

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