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Domestic Violence

Volume 507: debated on Tuesday 16 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the British Crime Survey takes into account in its methodology the nature of domestic violence abusers when gathering information on domestic violence offences; and whether he has considered the merits of any other method of collecting such information. (321377)

The British Crime Survey (BCS) is carried out in respondents' own homes. It is recognised that respondents may not wish to disclose being victim of domestic abuse in a face-to-face interview, especially if the abuser is present at the time of interview. For that reason, the BCS includes a self-completion module on domestic abuse in which respondents may answer questions in private. It is likely that there remains a degree of under-reporting of the level of such abuse but trends will be unaffected as this methodology has been applied consistently over time. The Home Office also commissions ad-hoc social research projects to explore the nature of domestic violence and also to inform the development and evaluation of policy and practice as and when is required.

Copies of reports can be found online on the Home Office publication website:

http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/