NEWS


  • DOMESTIC ABUSE BILL TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR VICTIMS AND TO HOLD AUTHORITIES TO ACCOUNT

    Mel Stride

    CENTRAL DEVON MP Mel Stride is optimistic that the Domestic Abuse Bill currently making its way through Parliament will make a difference for victims of domestic violence. The bill, which has been welcomed by organisations such as Women’s Aid and is expected to receive cross-party support, will improve legislation in several key areas. For example, the Bill will end the practice of victims being cross-examined in court by their accused abuser and provide more support for victims during court cases, such as being able to give evidence in court via video link. The bill will also create a Domestic Abuse Commissioner to better hold local authorities, the justice system and other statutory agencies to account for tackling domestic abuse and will turn the guidance supporting the existing Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme into law.

    Mr Stride said:

    “Despite the percentage of convictions for domestic abuse prosecutions being at its highest level since 2010, with 76% of prosecutions now resulting in a conviction, a lot more needs to be done to reduce domestic violence, increase conviction rates further and ensure victims are better supported. This bill will improve police and local government responses to domestic abuse and more legislation, as outlined in the Queen’s Speech, will be put forward which will result in violent offenders being locked up for longer.”

    Earlier this year Mr Stride helped draw attention to domestic abuse and how it affects men as well as women by promoting a short film made by his constituent Karen Turner on the subject. Mr Stride added:

    "A third of domestic abuse victims are male and so while the majority of domestic abuse protections are rightly geared towards vulnerable women we must also dispel the myth that just because you’re a man you can’t be the victim of domestic abuse.” 

     







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