Acids: Crimes of Violence

Home Office written question – answered on 7th September 2018.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent steps he is taking to prevent acid attacks in London.

Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women

As set out in the Serious Violence Strategy, the Government is taking a range of action to prevent acid attacks. This is based on the action plan announced in July 2017 which detailed four key strands: ensuring effective support for victims and survivors; supporting effective policing; ensuring relevant legislation is understood and consistently applied; and working with retailers to restrict access to acids and other harmful corrosive substances. This is being delivered and includes guidance and support to police officers on how best to prevent such attacks but also how to respond to a victim of an acid attack.

The Government has also introduced the Offensive Weapons Bill which includes new measures on stopping the sale of corrosive products to under 18s, and making it an offence to possess a corrosive substance in a public place without good reason. This new possession offence will make it easier for the police to take action if they stop someone carrying acid as they will no longer need to prove that the person carrying the substance is intending to cause an injury with it.

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