Tackling domestic abuse – new support service to target perpetrators, as well as improve support for victims

A new service to support victims of domestic abuse in Hampshire, as well as help tackle the behaviour of perpetrators, will start in April 2019, building on the support currently available

Jul 31 2018

The County Council, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Southampton City Council are joining together to fund the service as part of a new contract with a value of up to a maximum of £13.5million over seven years.

In agreeing the County Council's share of the funding of up to £10.5million, Councillor Patricia Stallard, Executive Member for Public Health at Hampshire County Council, said: “We know that investing in domestic abuse services makes a big difference to victims and their families – but for every victim there is a perpetrator. This is why we need to be providing support services that help victims while at the same time tackling the behaviour of those who abuse.

“Currently only a small number of perpetrators are participating in prevention and/or behavioural change programmes. Unless perpetrator behaviour is addressed, victims, be they men, women or children will continue to suffer.

“The new service will further improve the support currently available, and is part of a co-ordinated approach to tackling domestic abuse across the county.”

Improvements to the service will include:

• Increasing the range of safety accommodation available
• Providing more dedicated support to children and families
• Establishing personal support networks to help victims with their long term recovery
• More targeted work with key groups, such as repeat and persistent perpetrators, high risk offenders and young perpetrators in the 18-24 year age category. This will aim to increase engagement and prevent future patterns of abuse

The funding arrangements for the new service are:

• Hampshire County Council - £10.5million for victim and perpetrator services
• The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner - £2.5million for victim and perpetrator services
• Southampton City Council - £400,000 for perpetrator services only

All organisations involved in tackling abuse in Hampshire will continue to work closely together through the Hampshire Domestic Abuse Partnership.

During 2016/17, Hampshire County Council’s commissioned victim support services helped over 4,500 adults and children through either community based support or crisis accommodation.