We have been working with legal and domestic abuse experts to call for improved legal protection for survivors of domestic abuse to be added to the Domestic Abuse Bill for those whose offending is driven by their experience of domestic abuse.
This would address a gap in legal protection for survivors, strengthen recognition of the links between victimisation and offending and deter inappropriate prosecutions.
The Bill was reintroduced on 3 March 2020 and we are building parliamentary support for our proposed amendments to give legal protection to those driven by domestic abuse into offending. Our proposed amendments have been tabled by Jess Phillips MP for consideration by the Public Bill Committee, which will report by 25 June.
Two recent articles discuss why the new defences are needed. PRT associate Sarah Beresford’s blog is based on her recent conversation with a child whose mother is in prison for an offence attributable to her experience of domestic abuse. Barrister Paramjit Ahluwalia’s article for the Law Society Gazette explains why current defences are ineffective.
Download our short briefing here.
Our proposals are supported by:
Agenda: the alliance for women and girls at risk
Paramjit Ahluwalia, Lamb Building
AVA (Against Violence and Abuse)
Dame Vera Baird QC, Victims’ Commissioner for England and Wales
East Surrey Domestic Abuse Services
Howard League for Penal Reform
Professor Marianne Hester OBE, University of Bristol
Nicole Jacobs, designate Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales
Justice for Women
Legal Aid Practitioners’ Group
John Plummer, London Prisons Mission
Dr Jo Roberts, University of Bristol
UKPAC, Soroptimist International Great Britain and Ireland
Surviving Economic Abuse
Clare Wade QC, Garden Court Chambers
Welsh Women’s Aid
Harriet Wistrich, Centre for Women’s Justice
Women’s Aid Federation for England
Women in Prison
Download our report ‘There’s a reason we’re in trouble: Domestic abuse as a driver to women’s offending’
Download the Criminal Bar Association’s accompanying briefing on the need for a statutory defence
To find out more, contact us:
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