26/02/2009

Domestic Abuse Targeted By Policing Board

With police attending around 300 calls to domestic incidents weekly, yesterday's focus by the Northern Ireland Policing Board on the issue is being seen as particularly timely, especially as an inquiry into the issue is due for publication next month.

The Board's Human Rights and Professional Standards Committee met with key stakeholders to discuss emerging trends into its own probe into domestic abuse. Chairman of the Committee Basil McCrea said: "Domestic abuse is a serious problem in Northern Ireland, which has a devastating effect upon victims and other family members.

"We know that it will affect approximately one in four women and one in six men in their lifetime, with children suffering particularly as a result of exposure to domestic abuse within the home," he said, noting that the PSNI attends, on average, 46 domestic incidents a day.

"We also know that many more incidents are not reported to the police. The PSNI has revised its policy on responding to domestic abuse and has undertaken a number of positive initiatives aimed at reducing the number of incidents, in particular the number of repeat incidents," he continued.
News Image
The Committee and representatives from organisations who deal with victims and perpetrators of domestic abuse, were focusing yesterday on the scale of the problem, prevention and protection issues in addition to the court process and rates of conviction.

Sinn Féin MLA spokesperson on Human Rights, Martina Anderson, was also involved in the round table discussion on domestic abuse.

She said this was the final discussion with key stakeholders before the results of the inquiry into domestic abuse are pubished on March 24th.

"A key aspect of this inquiry will be examining all the reasons why some victims are deterred from reporting these crimes.

"This report will be published to raise awareness and to challenge attitudes to domestic abuse.

"Key areas for the discussion will be the scale of the problem include under reporting, prevention and protection of domestic abuse for victims, investigation and arrests, adequate training of PSNI members in issues surrounding domestic abuse and the role of courts can play in ending domestic violence.

"Within it there are challenges for the PSNI and their approach in tackling domestic abuse," she said.

(BMcC/JM)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

19 March 2020
Head Teachers Union Welcomes School Closures
The National Association of Head Teachers has welcomed the news that all schools in Northern Ireland will close from Friday.
15 December 2015
79 Domestic Abuse Incidents Reported On Christmas Day Last Year
A total of 79 domestic abuse incidents were reported on Christmas Day in Northern Ireland last year, according to the police. 111 incidents were reported on Boxing Day and from 24 December to 28 December last year, there were a total of 515 recorded domestic incidents.
24 March 2009
NI Domestic Call-Outs 'Endemic'
Police respond to a domestic call-out every 23 minutes in Northern Ireland, in what has been described as an 'endemic problem' of abuse in the home. According to a report by the Policing Board, one in four women in the province will be attacked by their partner.
11 February 2009
Domestic Violence Targeted
There has been a call for more to be done to tackle the issue of domestic violence. Members of the Northern Ireland Policing Board met this week with senior police officers and officials from the Department of Health & Social Services to discuss ongoing programmes of work to deal with both domestic violence and abuse.
05 July 2018
Campaign Launches To Tackle Domestic Abuse
The PSNI has launched a campaign after new figures revealed a rise in domestic abuse incidents over the holiday period. The message of the campaign is 'If you feel like you're walking on eggshells that's domestic abuse'. The campaign will run from now until the end of July and it aims to encourage victims to report incidents of domestic abuse.