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Young people under 18 could be included within the cross-government definition of domestic violence for the first time, under a consultation launched by the Home Secretary Theresa May.

The leaders of the three main political parties have all signed the Women’s Aid ‘Real Man’ pledge to mark the International Day Against Violence Against Women.

The Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, has warned the Government of the serious consequences of pursuing far reaching cuts to legal aid, as the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill reaches Report Stage in the House of Commons.

The Home Office has launched a consultation on whether to introduce a scheme for disclosing information about an individual’s history of domestic violence to a new partner.

The latest court statistics released by the Ministry of Justice show that fewer domestic violence applications or domestic violence orders were made between April and June of this year than in the same period last year.

 

Victims of domestic violence will struggle to receive vital unemployment benefits, as they will need to provide written evidence of their abuse from the same charities and refuges that are being cut or closed as a result of government spending cuts, warns the TUC. 

Local authorities are ignoring Ministers’ warnings that violence against women services should not be a soft target for funding cuts and are risking women’s safety and support, according to the TUC, End Violence Against Women Coalition and Women’s Resource Centre.

A new scheme that will allow the police to prevent suspected domestic abusers from returning to a victim's home is being piloted over the next twelve months.

 

Representatives from the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) and the United Nations have called on all 27 member states of the European Union – and the EU itself – to sign up to the ground breaking new Council of Europe Convention on Violence against Women and Domestic Violence.

The European Commission (EC) is proposing a package of measures to ensure a minimum level of rights, support and protection for victims of crime across the EU, no matter where they come from or live.

The court closure programme to be implemented by the government as part its cost cutting measures will lead to the closure of a high number of Specialist Domestic Violence Courts (SDVC), reports the Law Society Gazette. According to the Gazette, as many as one in six of the specialist courts could be scheduled for closure.

Local areas are now required to undertake new action to tackle domestic homicide following any case where someone has been killed by their current or former partner.

The Director of Public Prosecutions has said that women in England and Wales are still more at risk of crime in their own homes than anywhere else. Speaking at the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) headquarters in central London, Keir Starmer QC said domestic violence is a "serious and pernicious" form of crime and that while much progress has been made in prosecuting offenders in recent years, police and prosecutors must do more to tackle it.

The Justice Select Committee has published a report expressing concerns over the Government's reform proposals for legal aid in England and Wales, with particular reference to the possible impact on family law cases.

National domestic violence charity Women’s Aid has launched the results of their survey of the effects of the proposed cuts to domestic and sexual violence services.

Spouses and partners of UK residents who are forced to flee their relationships as a result of domestic violence will be able to access vital support services, Home Secretary Theresa May has announced.