The Home Office has announced that, from 31st January 2024, one-off urgent payments of £500 will be available to survivors of domestic abuse to assist them with finally leaving their abusers and rebuild new lives.
Survivors of domestic abuse will be able to apply for the one-off payment through supported services such as frontline services, helplines and professionals who specialise in domestic abuse. The one-off urgent payment will be for essential items such as food, supplies for children, or securing a rental property. Victims will also be able to make an application for a further £2,500 to assist in securing their future.
This incentive is being put in place to encourage people who find themselves stuck in abusive relationships to make the very difficult first step in fleeing their situation for a better future.
Nicole Jacobs, Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales stated: “I hope to see this critical funding reach as many victims and survivors as possible, including those who face the most significant barriers to support”.
The Home Office also funds “perpetrator intervention” projects which aim to stop domestic abusers and stalkers from repeatedly targeting victims and terrorising vulnerable people.
A 2022 consensus from the Office of National Statistics highlights the following:
The Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) estimated that 5.0% of adults (6.9% women and 3.0% men) aged 16 years and over experienced domestic abuse in the year ending March 2022; this equates to an estimated 2.4 million adults (1.7 million women and 699,000 men).
Approximately 1 in 5 adults aged 16 years and over (10.4 million) had experienced domestic abuse since the age of 16 years.
There was no significant change in the prevalence of domestic abuse experienced by adults aged 16 to 59 years in the last year, compared with the year ending March 2020; a year largely unaffected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the last time the data was collected.
The number of police recorded domestic abuse-related crimes in England and Wales increased by 7.7% compared with the previous year, to 910,980 in the year ending March 2022; this follows increases seen in previous years and may reflect increased reporting by victims.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) domestic abuse-related charging rate in England and Wales increased for the first time in four years to 72.7% in the year ending March 2022 but remains below the year ending March 2018 (75.9%).
The National Domestic Abuse Helpline delivered 50,791 support sessions through phone call or live chat in the year ending March 2022, a similar number to the previous year.
More can be found here.
If you’ve experienced domestic abuse and would like to seek legal advice and support, you can speak to our experienced family law team here at Farleys. We can arrange a confidential discussion to advise on your next steps. You can get in touch by phone on 0845 287 0939, by email through our online contact form, or using the online chat below.