Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson has welcomed the announcement of £345,319 in new government funding for the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner to help in the fight against domestic abuse.
The funding is part of £11.3 million in funding for innovative programmes that aim to reduce the risk posed by perpetrators of domestic abuse, and that improve safety and protection for victims. There is also a focus on stalking prevention and supporting adolescent perpetrators to change their behaviour.
The £345,000 awarded to Lancashire will go towards introducing a 10-week programme for teenagers having difficulty managing conflict in their relationships, and support work in schools including Healthy Relationships education. A helpline/live-chat function will also be piloted, that will open from 3-8pm for advice and guidance.
The funding follows the recent passing of the Domestic Abuse Act, aimed at improving how domestic abuse is responded to, strengthening protections for victims whilst also ensuring perpetrators feel the full force of the law, and the publishing last month of the Government’s Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy.
Other recent initiatives to help prevent domestic abuse include the Home Office’s #YouAreNotAlone campaign and pharmacies across the country launching the Ask for Ani codeword scheme.
Mr Stephenson said, “This additional funding to tackle domestic abuse in Lancashire is hugely welcome. Focusing on changing behaviour at a young age is the right approach, when teenagers most need good guidance on what is acceptable and how to relate to people we’re forming close relationships with.
“With similar initiatives being funded across the country, and more than £28 million being provided to domestic abuse organisations too, this can help teach the change that is needed to reduce domestic abuse and violence in the long term.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “To prevent the abhorrent crimes of domestic abuse from happening in the first place, we must deepen our understanding of who commits them, why they do so, and how it may escalate.
This fund builds on the considerable work already taking place to tackle domestic abuse and aims to better understand key behaviours so we can put a stop to them for good.”