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Domestic Violence

Volume 569: debated on Monday 28 October 2013

The coalition Government acknowledges that some victims of domestic violence have specific needs and require a specialist response. The updated violence against women and girls action plan sets out a series of steps to address these needs, and outlines additional measures to protect hard-to-reach victims.

Many women in observant religious communities find it hard to leave a domestic violence background. What specific practical support can be given to these women so they feel comfortable about leaving a violent background?

The Government acknowledges that victims face a variety of pressures when leaving violent relationships. In order to provide a specialist response for hard-to-reach victims, we have, for example, funded projects aimed specifically at those at risk of forced marriage and female genital mutilation, to raise awareness of the law, legal rights and support services. They can also be helped through the five freephone helplines the Home Secretary referred to earlier.