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Domestic Violence

Volume 474: debated on Tuesday 1 April 2008

Last July I made a statement to the House setting out three key priorities for the Ministers for Women. One of these priorities is, “tackling violence against women and improving the way we deal with women who commit crimes”.

We have done a great deal to step up action against domestic violence, sexual offences and human trafficking, but there is more to do. Domestic violence still results in two homicides every week. It not only harms women but has a devastating impact on children. Human trafficking takes many forms and blights the lives of men, women and children in many different continents. Britain is a major focus for the global trade in the sexual exploitation of women by traffickers, who trick or abduct young women and force them into prostitution.

We need to ensure that the substantive law is right and make it clear beyond doubt that domestic and sexual violence against women, and human trafficking for prostitution, will not be tolerated.

Today the Government is publishing “Tackling Violence Against Women: A Cross-Government Narrative”. This report draws together work being done across Government to tackle violence against women and responds to the End Violence Against Women (EVAW) coalition’s annual Making the Grade survey. EVAW campaign’s work is a valuable part of the work to tackle violence against women, and I welcome both the challenge and opportunities which Making the Grade offers.

Copies of “Tackling Violence Against Women: A Cross-Government Narrative” will be available in the Commons Library.