Women’s Aid statement on £20 million fund for domestic abuse
Wednesday 8th March 2017
Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Women’s Aid, said:
“The extra £20 million of funding announced today for services to support women and children who have lived through the fear and trauma of domestic violence and abuse is desperately needed – and warmly welcomed. It’s not a moment too soon, as Women’s Aid’s most recent national survey found that over a third of domestic abuse organisations were running a service with no dedicated funding.
“The Prime Minister’s strong commitment to helping survivors of domestic abuse is a fitting message for International Women’s Day. With two women a week on average being killed by a partner or ex-partner in England and Wales, something has to change.
“We look forward to working closely with the Government to identify how this fund can be invested most effectively. The key objective must be that domestic abuse survivors and their children are helped towards independent and fulfilled lives. We know that the forthcoming Domestic Violence and Abuse Act will aim to reform and strengthen the criminal justice response and legislation concerning domestic abuse. This is a good move, but it will not achieve the step-change the Prime Minister seeks unless the Government also ensures support is there for women much earlier (as Women’s Aid is doing with our Change that Lasts pilots). We must also consider whether or not they want the police involved, and that all concerned are working towards the long-term recovery of survivors and their children – not just managing short-term risk. The services that deliver the specialist support survivors need must be protected, and survivors themselves must be at the heart of all decisions made on how this fund is spent.”