Domestic abuse

Intelligence assessment

Domestic abuse is a term that describes intentional, ongoing, controlling and coercive behaviours by one person, using emotional, financial, physical and sexual violence, stalking and harassment, to ensure power and control over another, with who they have, or have had, an intimate or family relationship.

Understanding what domestic abuse is and how it impacts on individuals, families and communities, is crucial to ensuring that high-quality and cost-effective services are delivered in Lancashire.

Domestic abuse: findings from the Crime Survey for England and Wales - Office for National Statistics

According to the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) year ending March 2019, an estimated 2.4 million adults aged 16 to 74 years experienced domestic abuse in the last year (1.6 million women and 786,000 men).

The police recorded 746,219 domestic abuse-related crimes in the year ending March 2019, an increase of 24% from the previous year. This increase may reflect improved recording by the police and increased reporting by victims.

The police made 32 arrests per 100 domestic abuse-related crimes in the year ending March 2019, equating to 214,965 arrests (in the 39 police forces that supplied data).

Referrals of suspects of domestic abuse-flagged cases from the police to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for a charging decision fell 11%, from 110,653 in the year ending March 2018 to 98,470 in the year ending March 2019.

Over three-quarters of domestic abuse-related CPS prosecutions were successful in securing a conviction in the year ending March 2019 (77%), a similar level to the previous year.

This joint strategic needs assessment (JSNA) (PDF 450 KB) summarises all the evidence available both nationally and locally that can inform decision making around the provision of services by statutory and voluntary, community and faith sector (VCFS) agencies for domestic abuse within Lancashire. More details are contained in the technical reports.

  1. The evidence base (PDF 1.3 MB) looks at current literature and Lancashire partnership intelligence about the prevalence and trends in reported domestic abuse in the county. It explores the characteristics of known victims and perpetrators and discusses the factors which can make the problem worse. It also looks at policy changes and their implication for all services dealing with domestic abuse.
  2. The service user experience consultation (PDF 563 KB) gives the qualitative view of domestic abuse in the county through in-depth interviews with a number of survivors of domestic abuse.
  3. The service mapping (PDF 587 KB) review looks at current domestic abuse service provision across the Lancashire-12 area.
  4. The good practice report (PDF 569 KB) looks at evaluations of national and local interventions.
  5. A report focusing in on children and young people (PDF 406 KB)

The JSNA and accompanying reports have been developed by a multi-agency team encompassing all the statutory agencies who deliver services related to domestic abuse in Lancashire.

From this evidence a number of recommendations have been developed around prevention, early identification and disclosure, early intervention, commissioning of services, workforce development, building resilience and developing inter-agency collaboration.

Improving the police response to domestic abuse

In an HMIC report, Lancashire Constabulary stood out as providing a better service to victims of domestic abuse than other forces. Part of its strength is its ability to deliver a service in partnership with a comparatively high number of Independent Domestic Violence Advocates (IDVAs), who are funded by a range of partners and are able to support a range of cases not just the high risk ones. It failed on one element of the survey, by not being able to provide data on repeat victims of domestic abuse. Download this report - HMIC Lancashire Improving the police response to domestic abuse (PDF 155 KB).

Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPO)

Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPOs) and Domestic Violence Protection Notices (DVPNs) were rolled out across all 43 police forces in England and Wales from 8 March 2014. DVPOs were introduced in Lancashire on 28 July 2014 and from this date to 31 December 2014, 34 DVPNs were authorised by the rank of superintendent or above, 31 DVPOs granted by court and one DVPO breached. Download the report - Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPO): One year on - Home Office assessment of national roll-out.

Page updated July 2020