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Sexual Assault Referral Centres

Volume 488: debated on Monday 23 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what funding her Department has allocated to sexual assault referral centres for 2009-10. (255362)

The 2009-10 funding round for new and existing Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARCs) was split into two tranches to enable partnerships to plan expenditure and ensure they were able to spend the full amount of funding awarded within the financial year. £1.6 million was made available in total.

Bids were initially invited in November 2008. £574,000 was awarded to 20 SARCs in that initial round. A further bidding round to spend the remainder of the funding will open in April 2009.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many sexual assault referral centres will open in (a) the next 12 months and (b) the next five years. (255617)

There are currently 27 sexual assault referral centres (SARCs) open and a further 10 in development. Of those in development, the Government estimate that five will open within 12 months and an additional three will offer a partial service. By the end of 2010 those offering a partial service will open fully, as will the other two SARCs in development.

The Home Secretary has made a commitment to have at least one SARC in every police force area by 2011. A bidding round for funding for new and existing SARCs will be announced in April.