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Examination of Witnesses

Part of Domestic Abuse Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:24 pm on 29th October 2019.

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Eleanor Briggs:

Absolutely. That is why for us this is the part of the Bill that offers us the best chance we have to get those services. People have already talked about how something gets done when you make it statutory. When there is an obligation, it will be provided. We want these services to be a statutory obligation to provide support to children and families and then we will see it funded. As I mentioned, we have seen children’s services, where there is no statutory obligation. Those, as you say, are the low-hanging fruit and the ones that go when there is a problem.

You say we are putting all our eggs in one basket. This is absolutely key for us and the best way that we can see at the moment to secure vital support. We also definitely want to see children in the definition on the face of the Bill. That is really important in getting a response from all services. Zoe has already mentioned that the police are doing much better, which is great to hear, but we know from studies abroad that the police have responded to children much better when children are named as victims in the definition of domestic abuse, so we want to see that here as well.