Spring Budget 2021 - domestic abuse support
- AuthorLiz Graham
The Chancellor has announced a range of measures to support the victims of domestic abuse in the Budget. Mr Sunak announced that there would be an extra £19 million spent to help victims of domestic violence as he recognised that abuse is one of the "hidden tragedies" of the pandemic.
Speaking in the Commons, he told MPs: "I am announcing today an extra £19 million, on top of the £125 million we announced at the Spending Review, for domestic violence programmes to reduce the risk of reoffending and to pilot a network of respite rooms to provide specialist support for vulnerable, homeless women."
In the 2020 Budget the Chancellor pledged £10 million towards curbing domestic abuse, so this year's budget towards tackling domestic abuse has almost doubled compared to that figure. Domestic abuse charities do not believe that the sums are sufficient to combat the rising numbers of cases however. The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has fuelled a 10% annual rise in domestic violence cases. Official figures revealed there were 842,813 domestic abuse-related offences recorded in the year ending September 2020, which is up from 769,611 during the previous 12 months.
Family lawyer Liz Graham comments: “The pandemic and lockdown has not only affected people financially; we have seen an increase in requests to our family law team, often because people are struggling in close living conditions through lack of compatibility or because of more serious issues, such as domestic abuse. The statistics back this up, showing a significant rise in domestic abuse during the pandemic.”
If you need specialist advice in relation to these issues, please contact our family law team at Chattertons.