All domestic abuse deaths to have multi-agency review

Teenage woman fearful after being assaulted by her partner. Picture posed by model. Young women aged between 16 and 19 are most at risk of abuse in the home, figures show

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Every domestic abuse death is to be automatically reviewed in England and Wales in an effort to make sure lessons about violence in the home are learned.

Mandatory case reviews will now be carried out by all involved agencies, including police and health services.

It follows comments from Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer that teenage women are most at risk of abuse and more must be done to tackle it.

Almost 100 women are killed by partners or ex-partners each year, figures show.

And 21 men died from domestic abuse in England and Wales last year.

Together with the police and health services, local authorities, probation, voluntary groups and any other bodies connected to a victim will now have to examine together exactly what went wrong and consider how to spot the signs when someone's life is in danger.

Speaking at the Crown Prosecution Service headquarters in central London on Tuesday, Mr Starmer said too many prosecutions were failing and more must be done to protect victims.

Start Quote

There may be a next generation of domestic violence waiting in the wings”

End Quote Keir Starmer Director of public prosecutions

He also stressed the need for victims to be supported both during and after criminal proceedings.

He pointed to British Crime Survey findings which showed young women between the ages of 16 and 19 were most at risk of domestic abuse.

"What that tends to show is that there may be a next generation of domestic violence waiting in the wings.

"Domestic violence is serious and pernicious. It ruins lives, breaks up families and has a lasting impact," he said.

"It is criminal. And it has been with us for a very long time, yet it is only in the last 10 years that it has been taken seriously as a criminal justice issue.

"Although greatly reduced, the refrain 'it's just a domestic' is still heard far too frequently.

"The steps that we and our criminal justice partners are taking to tackle domestic violence risk limited success unless this complacency is tackled head on. A change in attitude is clearly needed."


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  • rate this

    Comment number 45.

    There's too much emphasis on keeping relationships together. People who stay together for the sake of the children are delusional. And the government is wrong to try and push for this.

    When the bad times outweigh the good, it's time to get out. And young people should be educated in the fact that no form of abuse is acceptable to put up with.

    Nothing is worth living with an abusive partner.

  • rate this

    Comment number 40.

    Total Mass Retain

    Yes, people ultimately have to take responsibility for themselves and their actions. But sometimes they need help to achieve that.
    You obviously haven't heard of, or don't care about, the vast body of psychological evidence that shows that people in abusive relationships do lose the psychological ability to make what other people would consider to be rational choices.

  • rate this

    Comment number 38.

    Domestic violence amogst teens should have been noticed and addressed a long time ago. I was in an abusive relationship aged 15 to 19 (I'm now 21) and didn't know how to get out of it. It was never discussed in school and, although I had a very supportive family, I couldn't admit or really understand what was happening. It should be highlighted at school age as a big no-no along with drugs etc.

  • rate this

    Comment number 37.

    "maria_31: The personal responsibility of the individual can not even enter into it. They are completely and utterly mentally and physically controlled by their abuser"

    Whether it's drug, alcohol, smoking addiction, obesity or abuse, individuals have to take control and take responsibility. Expecting society to solve your problems without taking responsibility yourself is no solution.

  • rate this

    Comment number 28.

    The personal responsibility of the individual can not even enter into it. They are completely and utterly mentally and physically controlled by their abuser. They cannot see anyone else but their abuser. No-one else actually exists in the world. I am aware of a girl who no longer speaks to her family or friends, she doesn't leave the house without her abusers permission and she thinks this normal


Comments 5 of 14


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