Victim of Domestic Abuse?
Domestic Abuse, a term used to cover a wide range of violence that occurs between both female and male relationships. Most people automatically presume that domestic abuse is just physical violence. It is not. Domestic Abuse covers a wide range of factors that people suffer on a daily basis without even knowing. Domestic abuse is now the term used, rather than domestic violence, to reflect the fact that offences may involve physical violence but can also involve psychological, sexual, financial and emotional abuse. Offences can affect women and men of all backgrounds. Victims can become particularly sensitive when discussing issues and distressing for them leading to significant harm to them.
Sentencing guidelines are to be amended to reflect the terminology shift from domestic ’violence’ to domestic ‘abuse’. Although there is no specific offence of domestic abuse, it can feature in many offences.
Previous guidelines stated that offences committed in a domestic context should be seen as no less serious than those committed in a non-domestic context. However, offences that take place in a domestic context will be treated as more serious under the new guideline.
Domestic abuse is rarely a one-off incident, it is likely to become increasingly frequent and more serious the longer it continues, and may result in death. It can also lead to lasting trauma for victims and their children.
Justice secretary Liz Truss said it was right that courts recognised that domestic abuse shatters lives and destroys families, and that punishments properly fit such abhorrent crimes. Tackling domestic abuse is a priority for the prime minister, so I am working with the home secretary to leave no stone unturned in delivering a system that protects victims and increases convictions.’
The new proposals also mark the first time guidelines have been produced for stalking, disclosing private sexual images (commonly known as ‘revenge porn’), and controlling and coercive behaviour
The guidelines identify some of the factors that make the offences particularly serious, such as sending images to a victim’s family, setting up fake social media profiles to post images, and inviting comment and contact
The new guidelines proposed will help ensure sentences reflect the seriousness of these offences and take into account the increases in sentence levels for stalking and harrassment introduced by parliament.
Do you feel like you have been a victim of Domestic Abuse? Please contact us today.