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Police awarded £11.3m for programmes to prevent domestic abuse crimes

Innovative programmes aim to reduce the risk posed by domestic abuse perpetrators and improve safety and protection for victims.

The Home Office has awarded £11.3 million to 25 Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) in England and Wales, to go towards domestic abuse intervention programmes.

The programmes focus on interventions encouraging behaviour change to help stop perpetrators from committing domestic abuse, with the ultimate aim of preventing further crimes from being committed.

Funding will also focus on key areas such as stalking prevention and supporting adolescent perpetrators.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said:

To prevent the abhorrent crimes of domestic abuse from happening in the first place, we must deepen our understanding of who commits them, why they do so, and how it may escalate.  

This fund builds on the considerable work already taking place to tackle domestic abuse and aims to better understand key behaviours so we can put a stop to them for good.

To secure funding, PCCs were able to bid for up to three projects in partnership with a local service provider of their choice.

The programmes use different methods to encourage behaviour change, including 1-to-1 and group therapy and community-based activity. Key objectives of the programmes include reduction in the frequency and gravity of abuse, reduction in the risk posed by the perpetrator and improved safety and protection for victims.

Specific interventions and projects across the country which the funding will go towards include:

  • providing targeted support to address substance misuse, mental health and unemployment;
  • therapy and Compulsive and Obsessive Behaviour programmes to address behaviours linked to stalking;
  • behavioural change courses for children and adolescents who are abusive, violent or using self-destructive behaviour, often as a result of having been exposed to domestic abuse within their home environment;
  • perpetrator support work in schools including healthy relationships education, delivered by professionals as part of the relationship and sex education requirement of schools.

The funding announced today builds on work already taking place to tackle domestic abuse.

Earlier this year the Home Office passed the landmark Domestic Abuse Act, which will bolster the response to domestic abuse on every level, strengthening protections for victims whilst also ensuring perpetrators feel the full force of the law.

Last month the government also published its Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy, to help ensure that women and girls are safe everywhere – at home, online and on the streets. 

The Home Office also took swift action right at the beginning of the pandemic with the #YouAreNotAlone campaign and worked with pharmacies across the country to launch the Ask for Ani codeword scheme.

This is in addition to appointing a Domestic Abuse Commissioner and providing more than £28 million to domestic abuse organisations.

Research into perpetrator interventions is key to understanding the issue of domestic abuse, which is why the Home Office also intends to conduct an evaluation of activity later in the financial year. The evaluations will be used to inform funding plans for future years and to ensure a more targeted approach to any future funding.

The bidding window for this fund closed on 2 July and of the applications received, 31 bids were successful totalling £11,335,884.89. Approximately £5.6m of this will go towards general perpetrator interventions, £3m for child and adolescent perpetrator interventions and £2.7m for stalking interventions.

A full table of successful bids and an overview of some of the intervention programmes can be found below:

PCC and number of successful bids Funding award Summary of bid
Cambridgeshire & Peterborough(1) £311,836 • Working with six local and two national partners including Suzy Lamplugh Trust and Respect, the funding will enable a new project to provide much needed support to prevent people from committing domestic abuse and stalking offences, whilst ensuring victims continue to receive professional help.
• Funding will also extend the number of people who can attend the Healthy Relationships Programme run by probation services.
• It will further help the development of a multi-agency Stalking Intervention Project with a police officer, specialist IDVA and Consultant Forensic Psychologist.
Cheshire (1) £538,100 • Introduction of the ‘Best of Me’ model which offers an early intervention approach to tackling perpetrator behaviours before these become pathologised or embedded.
• A school-based awareness programme will also raise issues around healthy and unhealthy relationships.
Cleveland (1) £200,333.33 • Providing direct support to perpetrators that have a range of complex needs and issues contributing to their offending, and present barriers to behaviour change.
• Using a ‘Team around the Couple’ trauma-informed, holistic and systems-based approach, the proposed model will build on and scale up the successful work of the area’s Multi-Agency Tasking and Co-ordination process.
Cumbria (1) £200,352 • Piloting a programme developed to provide specific, bespoke interventions for those identified as being high risk / high harm, prolific and repeat perpetrators.
• The programme will work alongside the existing work of the Turning the Spotlight project which will sit within a suite of interventions to address the needs of perpetrators posing all levels of risk across Cumbria.
Derbyshire (1) £659,488.21 • A set of programmes focusing on education work with young people at risk of perpetration, interventions with young perpetrators of abuse on their parents, and carers and whole family group work.
Dorset (1) £200,185 • Introduction of the Up2U Family Practice Model which would support perpetrators and their families at an earlier stage than the current provision and reduce the number of incidents at all risk levels.
• They will also train front line practitioners to identify behaviours and implement strategies to intervene.
Durham (1) £321,200 • Projects will be aimed at reducing risk factors associated with current aggressive behaviour.
• They will further look to support families where children or young people aged between 8 and 18 are abusive or violent towards the people close to them, particularly their parents or carers.
Dyfed Powys (1) £417,509 • Expanding the scope of the ‘Break 4 Change’ programme which focuses on child to parent abuse.
• Expanding the Inspiring Families programme, which takes a holistic approach to addressing a family’s individual needs.
• Region-wide delivery of Respect’s Working with Perpetrators programme.
Essex (1) £213,000 • Increase the geographic reach of existing programmes and increase the age range of individuals supported through the Change Hub perpetrator service.
• Run a targeted media campaign to tackle escalation of harmful behaviour.
Greater Manchester (2) £1,516,549 • Commission the charity Talk, Listen, Change to deliver work with young perpetrators of DA across Greater Manchester. Programmes cover interventions for both child to parent abuse and intimate partner abuse.
• Facilitate the provision of adult-focused domestic abuse perpetrator interventions across the area.
Hampshire (2) £495,471 • Piloting of initiatives to help build the evidence base of what works when tackling DA and Adolescent to Parent Violence amongst children and young people across multiple Local Authority areas.
• This includes adapting the Caring Dads programme, Great Behaviour Breakdown pilot, enhancing one to one support for existing adult interventions and Yellow Door Systemic Family Therapy.
Hertfordshire (1) £599,185 • Delivery of Change Plus, a 12-hour domestic abuse awareness course and early intervention project that helps to enable perpetrators of abuse to recognise their behaviour is abusive.
• Delivery of For Baby’s Sake, a holistic, whole family domestic abuse programme starting during pregnancy.
Humberside (1) £200,000 • Strengthen service provision for children and young people in the context of child to parent abuse by delivering through a new partnership between Humberside’s four unitary authorities.
• The delivery model will facilitate a whole-system approach to ensure whole family’s needs are met.
Kent (1) £378,967 • Introduction of dedicated one to one programmes for both DA and stalking perpetrators and a group-based programme for a separate cohort of DA perpetrators.
Lancashire (1) £345,319 • Introduction of the Parachute programme, a 10-week programme for teenagers having difficulty managing conflict in their relationships.
• Perpetrator support work in schools including Healthy Relationships education, delivered by professionals as part of the sex education requirement of schools.
• Piloting a daily helpline/live-chat function from 3-8pm for follow-up advice and guidance.
Mayor’s Office for Police and Crime (London) (3) £1,563,547 • A project aiming to improve responses to perpetrators of domestic abuse in families being supported by children’s social care via a co-ordinated multi-agency response.
• Multi-faceted support for perpetrators from BAME communities and partnering with the organisation RISE to deliver a number of programmes as part of an intersectional approach that takes account of victim and perpetrator identities.
• Investment within social care teams to equip the partnership to improve engagement with perpetrators at an earlier point in order to maximise the behaviour change opportunities and reduce harm.
Merseyside (1) £620,393 • Establishment of a dedicated team responding to the complex support needs of referred domestic abuse perpetrators. This will focus on health and social care needs, emotional wellbeing, housing, drugs and alcohol recovery and debt advice.
• A three-part programme focusing on non-convicted male perpetrators of DA to address substance misuse, mental health and unemployment.
• Provision of Merseyside’s first programme for abuse of parents by children and young people (police reports for which have significantly increased), using the Respect Young People’s Programme.
• Interventions using the Stalking Risk Profile to address intimate partner stalkers, with Paladin-trained ISACs providing support to those stalkers’ (female) victims.
North Wales (1) £267,705 • Expansion of the ADAPT (Agencies Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Tasking) programme to:
i. reduce re-offending of domestic abuse perpetrators
ii. safeguard adults and children at risk of domestic abuse
iii. break the cycle of abuse of the perpetrator.
South Yorkshire (1) £321,228 • Development of an offender programme which places positive requirements on offenders. This could also be mandated through Stalking Protection Orders.
• The programme will also assist in providing alternative outcomes for offenders and improve victim support.
Surrey (1) £502,602 • Funding will allow more people to take the Compulsive and Obsessive Behaviour Intervention programme (including mandated clinical supervision).
• The programme will complement the force’s existing stalking advocacy service and provide an option for local magistrates issuing stalking protection orders.
Sussex (1) £205,204 • Expansion of an existing programme for medium-risk DA perpetrators to cover East as well as West Sussex, by enabling referrals through core channels rather than just self-referrals, and providing a safeguarding support worker to safeguard those victims who do not wish to be referred to victim support services.
Warwickshire (1) £200,000 • Implementation of a step-change programme focusing on therapeutic support, structured group work, individual work and intensive case management.
• Ongoing risk management of and specialist support for victims, including 1:1 therapeutic counselling, weekly group therapy sessions, and the support of an IDVA or DA Outreach Service.
West Mercia (1) £455,939.37 • Development of Male and Masculinities and My Time, low/medium risk perpetrator programmes which complement an existing service working with high-risk perpetrators.
West Midlands (1) £209, 332.78 • Establishment of a dedicated multi-disciplinary team, responding to the complex support needs of those referred domestic abuse perpetrators. Support will focus on health and social care needs, emotional wellbeing, housing, drugs and alcohol recovery, debt advice and education and employment.
• Funding will also support programmes for younger perpetrators aged 16+.
West Yorkshire (1) £390,939 • Introduction of programmes focused on helping first time offenders.
• Support for Caring Dads Kirklees, a parenting programme for men who have exposed their children to domestic abuse.
• Support for Restore Families, a digitally delivered programme for adolescent perpetrators and Recognise Reflect Change, a programme for medium risk perpetrators.
Channel website: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/home-office

Original article link: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/police-awarded-113m-for-programmes-to-prevent-domestic-abuse-crimes

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