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Domestic Abuse: Convictions

Home Office written question – answered on 11th February 2020.

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Photo of Sarah Owen Sarah Owen Labour, Luton North

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to increase conviction rates for coercive control.

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

The Government’s domestic abuse consultation in 2018 asked whether further action should be taken to strengthen the coercive control offence introduced in 2015. In the response to that consultation the Government agreed to update the statutory guidance and Crown Prosecution Service legal guidance on the offence.

The Home Office will also work with other departments to improve understanding of the offence throughout the justice system, and seek to dispel stereotypes by promoting the updated statutory guidance for the offence through the courts and justice system. This will help to increase the number of cases that are brought, charged and convicted under this offence.

We have been reviewing the effectiveness of the existing coercive control legislation, both in terms of understanding and awareness, but also how adequately the legislation protects victims of this type of abuse. The findings of the review will be announced later this year.

In 2018/19, the conviction rate across all domestic abuse-related offences was 76.5% - the highest rate ever recorded.

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