News and Events

Austerity cuts for victims of domestic violence

  • Posted

On behalf of Alker Ball Healds Solicitors posted in Domestic Violence on Thursday, September 15, 2016. 

Many victims of domestic violence are not receiving the assistance that they need, according to campaigners, and the situation may worsen following government spending cuts. Manchester residents who have been through these types of situations are likely aware that abuse in the home is not just limited to physical aggression, but can include coercive behaviour and emotional manipulation. The very nature of this abuse makes it difficult for victims to seek aid, and when they do, the shortage of targeted services means that appropriate help is not always available.

The proposed government cap on housing benefits will directly affect the funding for shelters for domestic violence victims. More than 90 per cent of all the victims are women, and the organisation, Women's Aid, has carried out research that shows that 67 per cent of shelters may have to close unless they are made exempt from the proposals, a drastic statistic that the organisation says will have life-threatening implications for many victims seeking to escape from the violence in their homes.

The research highlighted that twice as many women are being hit by the government's austerity drive as men. All organisations aimed at women of a minority ethnic background and 95 per cent of all women's organisations have been affected by funding cuts. And while 25 per cent of all women in the U.K. have been exposed to domestic violence in their lives, almost a fifth of domestic violence shelters have closed since 2010. 

A family law solicitor who has experience with the wide range of domestic problems that can be associated with the ending of a relationship may be able to offer assistance to a client in a sensitive and supportive manner. People who have been victims of spousal abuse may wish to discuss their individual situations in order to understand the legal options that are available.