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Violence Against Women and Girls Thematic Review

Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls’ is a key priority in the Police and Crime Reduction Plan for South Wales. Whilst it is acknowledged that men and boys can also be affected by these types of abuse and violence, it remains the case that women are disproportionately affected in terms of occurrences and seriousness.

The British Crime Survey found that nearly one in three women will have experienced domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime and nearly one in five women will have experienced some form of sexual violence. Furthermore, women make up around 89% of all those who have experienced 4 or more incidents of domestic violence.

The Violence Against Women and Girls thematic review began in July 2013 and was conducted over five months. It is the first thematic review process to have been completed for South Wales Police.

The process has consisted of:

  • A Domestic Abuse Partner Engagement event with internal and external practitioners working across South Wales – this was chaired by the Deputy Police & Crime Commissioner.
  • A round table meeting with Welsh Women’s Aid and local Women’s Aid group Chief Executives – co chaired by the Deputy Police & Crime Commissioner and the ACC for Specialist Crime.
  • Meeting with domestic abuse victims and professionals that work with them.
  • A session on violence against women and girls with senior leaders and practitioners working within the Registered Social Landlord (RSL) sector.
  • An examination of internal data and information on the South Wales Police approach to violence against women and girls.
  • A meeting with ‘critical friends’ (experts in the violence against women and girls field) to discuss our position, proposals and challenges – chaired by the Deputy Police & Crime Commissioner.

The discussions with partners and external experts were based around the Police & Crime Reduction Plan’s key aims of:

  • Reducing under-reporting
  • Reducing the seriousness of violence against women and girls
  • More effective working with partners
  • An improvement of support to victims
  • An improved analysis of ‘hidden’ issues of violence against women and girls

The process highlighted the positive work that continues to take place in South Wales Police and the high regard that partner agencies have for the work of the police. It demonstrated the genuine commitment of South Wales Police senior officers and staff to being open to challenge in the desire to improve, wherever possible, for the benefit of victims. The review has also highlighted the notable complexities involved in providing a high quality service to victims of such serious forms of abuse and violence.

The overall findings highlighted key issues that South Wales Police should consider taking forward for the future in order to deliver on the Commissioner’s Police & Crime Reduction Plan priority of ‘Tackling violence against women and girls’. Our comprehensive thematic review into Violence Against Women & Girls in South Wales Police has led to the development of this joint plan. We are keen to positively deliver on the actions within the plan in order to work towards preventing violence against women and girls and providing the best possible response to victims.

Find out more: Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls Plan 2014-17

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