Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Teessiders losing Postcode lottery in domestic violence programmes - Ian Swales

Offenders convicted of domestic violence are facing longer and longer waits for their court-ordered programmes. According to research by the Liberal Democrats, Teesside has one of the worst records in the country. Offenders are waiting an average of 42 weeks for their programmes with the longest waits being over a year and a half. In the whole of England only Essex has a worse record.

A full regional breakdown is attached

Commenting, Liberal Democrat prospective MP for Redcar, Ian Swales, said:

“The Teesside position has worsened dramatically in the last few years. The Government is about to introduce yet more legislation on domestic violence but it is delivery not laws we need most. It is clear from these figures that the measures they have already introduced are not yet working.

“It is unacceptable that local perpetrators of domestic violence are not going on behaviour changing programmes for over nine months after sentence or release from prison.

“For the sake of victims, violent domestic abusers need urgent help with their problems and it should not take so long to give it to them. It risks creating new or repeat victims of this terrible crime.

“Victims of domestic violence are less likely to come forward if they think their attacker will not be dealt with for months.

“With the Attorney General warning that domestic violence will rise in a recession, it is important that we give top priority to this issue.”

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