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New help for domestic violence victims

July 14, 2011 12:36 AM
By WC release

Wiltshire Council is backing a new scheme launched by the police that will assist in making domestic abuse victims safer.

As of July 1 Wiltshire is one of three police forces piloting new powers to stop abusers from going back home after an arrest for violence has been made and where the alleged abuser is not charged or released on bail conditions.

These new powers are called Domestic Violence Protection Notices and Domestic Violence Protection Orders, sometimes known as 'Go Orders'.

Normally, victims would only receive immediate protection if the police arrested and charged the alleged abuser. Bail conditions could then be set to protect the victim.

But if the alleged abuser was not charged or bail conditions could not be imposed, he or she could be free to go back home.

These new powers will provide the court with the ability to stop that from happening if they believe the order is necessary to protect the victim from further violence.

Wiltshire Community Safety Partnership is fully supporting the police and will provide a support network for victims that report the abuse.

Chairman of the Wiltshire Community Safety Partnership, Maggie Rae said:

"We are very pleased to be supporting the police on this very important scheme which we hope will help people who are the victims of domestic abuse in Wiltshire.

"If you are the victim of domestic abuse and your partner receives a protection notice and order, you will receive our fullest support.

"We would urge all victims of domestic abuse to come forward. These new powers will make it easier for you to get help and support and space from being abused."

For more information on how the orders will work go to www.speakoutwiltshire.com

Update July 14th:

As of the 12/07/11, there had been 13 DVPN applications made, of which the Superintendent had granted 11 (9 Swindon and 2 Wiltshire). There have been 5 applications made at court for the DVPO and all 5 have been granted, with 6 still pending court hearings.

The projected volume based on a review of cases indicated 6-8 Cases per week for Wiltshire and Swindon. Early figures indicate that the level of DVPNs has exceeded these projections.

The funding provided by the Home Office for the pilot is £55,000. This includes legal costs - the cost per DVPN application not contested is £375, if the application is contested the cost is £500.

Based on the projected volume of applications and taking a 50/50 contested/not contested split, the actual cost for the pilot could be about £100,000.