Rotherham MP calls for more resources for dealing with domestic violence

Sarah Champion, Labour MP for Rotherham
Sarah Champion, Labour MP for Rotherham

Rotherham MP Sarah Champion has called for more resources for dealing with domestic violence.

The Shadow Minister for Preventing Abuse and Domestic Violence spoke out following a report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary, which revealed that specialist domestic violence units were in danger of being overwhelmed because of an increase in reported offences.

She said: “It is welcomed that more victims of domestic abuse have the courage to come forward, but the HMIC report shows the volume of cases is putting significant strain on an already reduced police force.

“Whilst the police are clearly committed to tackling the crime, they simply do not have the resources to do so.

“Another serious concern is that on-going cuts to local authorities and the voluntary sector mean that specialist services, such as counselling and refuges do not have the capacity to support victims, if indeed they are still in existence.

“Securing prosecutions is important, but helping the victims rebuild their lives is also key. The fact we now have a postcode lottery as to whether or not you can receive such support is a national scandal.”

HMIC inspectors told South Yorkshire Police it must improve the way it deals with domestic abuse victims because of a ‘lack of consistent and thorough processes’.