Domestic violence, also called domestic abuse, is a crime and a major social problem affecting many families.
In 90% of reported domestic violence incidents, children have either been present in the same or a nearby room.
What is domestic abuse
The definition of domestic abuse used by the government can encompass, but is not limited to:
Controlling behaviour is a range of acts designed to make a person subordinate or dependent by isolating them from sources of support, exploiting their resources and capacities for personal gain, depriving them of the means needed for independence, resistance and escape and regulating their everyday behaviour.
Coercive behaviour is an act or a pattern of acts of assault, threats, humiliation and intimidation or other abuse that is used to harm, punish or frighten their victim”.
Many people find it difficult to understand why people remain in or return to abusive violent situations. A combination of fear, love, the risk of homelessness and financial issues can make it very difficult for partners with children to leave and some may not want to.
What you can do
Domestic abuse is taken very seriously by the police. If someone is in immediate danger, call 999.
If you live in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough and have been a victim or witness of crime, you can access a wide range of services that provide emotional and practical support. Visit the Cambs Victim Services website for more information. You can make a self-referral to their Outreach Service for survivors of domestic abuse.
The Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Domestic Abuse & Sexual Violence Partnership have a range of information on their website including:
- Information for friends and family who may be worried about a loved one experiencing domestic abuse
- Details of local and national support helplines
- Resources for professionals
- Information about how to safely protect children
Domestic Homicide Reviews
As part of Home Office regulations, a Domestic Homicide Review (DHR) should be carried to review the circumstances in which the death of a person aged 16 or over has, or appears to have, resulted from violence, abuse or neglect by a person to whom they were related or with whom they were or had been in an intimate personal relationship, or a member of the same household as themselves.
The DHR is held with a view to identifying the lessons to be learnt from the death.
A DHR should also be considered where a person has taken their own life and there was domestic abuse known to anyone (including statutory agencies, family, friends etc).
As part of the Home Office guidance, DHR reports must be published once they have been approved by the Home Office quality panel. Please find below DHR reports from Peterborough.
There are e-learning courses available on the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence website.
Further advice about training is available on the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Safeguarding Partnership Board’s website.