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Astounding Domestic Abuse Statistics for the UK

What Is Domestic Abuse? 

As per the Domestic Abuse Act 2021, domestic abuse occurs between two parties over the age of 16 who are personally connected to each other. According to the act, ‘personally connected’ is defined as parties who are married, partners, ex-partners, relatives, have, or there has been a time when they each have had, a parental relationship in relation to the same child. Domestic abuse can manifest in the form of controlling, coercive, threatening, degrading and also sexual violent behaviour. Examples of domestic abuse include being made fun of in front of your friends or family, being put down for your accomplishments, made to feel worthless and as though you are nothing without them. Domestic abuse can also come in the form of grabbing, pushing, pinching, shoving or hitting.

Many women and men who experience domestic abuse may fear speaking out and accepting the abuse because of the myth that if it occurs within a relationship, it isn’t abuse. Domestic abuse can occur within heterosexual relationships as well as LGBTQ+ relationships.  Domestic abuse is unacceptable but unfortunately, it does happen. The following statistics demonstrate the startling presence of domestic abuse in the UK: 

  • How many reports of domestic abuse are filed per year in the UK? 

In the year ending March 2021, statistics demonstrate a  6% increase in the number of police-recorded domestic abuse-related crimes in England and Wales. The number of domestic abuse reports reached a staggering 845,734; this figure surpasses increases seen in previous years and may indicate improved recording by the police as well as greater reporting by survivors of domestic abuse.

  • How many arrests did the police make in relation to domestic abuse in 2021?

In the year ending March 2021, the police made 33 arrests per 100 domestic abuse-related crimes which is the same as in the previous year. That is to say, only one-third of domestic abuse survivors will see their abusers arrested let alone charged and convicted. 

  • Is there a higher demand for domestic abuse helplines? 

In the year ending March 2021, the demand for domestic abuse helplines increased; 2021 demonstrated a 22% increase in the number of people seeking support from the National Domestic Abuse Helpline in England. That being said, this percentage does not necessarily suggest a surge in the number of cases but could suggest an increase in the gravity of the domestic abuse experienced.

  • What is the charging rate for domestic abuse-related crimes? 

Whilst cases of domestic abuse are increasing and demand for domestic abuse helpline services has become greater, the charging rate for domestic abuse-related crimes is decreasing. In other words, many domestic abuse survivors are not receiving justice for the crimes committed against them. For the third year in a row, the CPS charging rate for domestic abuse-related crimes in England and Wales decreased to 70% in the year ending March 2021, down from 76% in the year ending March 2018. 

  • What effect has COVID-19 had on domestic-abuse related incidents? 

According to the UN organization UN WOMEN, domestic-abuse related incidents increased during the pandemic. Of the 13 countries surveyed, 2 in 3 women reported that they or a woman they know has experienced violence at some point during their lifetime. Nearly 1 in 2 report direct or indirect experiences of violence since the start of the pandemic. The type of domestic abuse varies, but the most common form is verbal abuse (50%), succeded by sexual harassment (40%), physical abuse (36%), denial of basic needs (35%) and denial of means of communication (30%).  

How we can help

If you or someone you know has experienced domestic abuse, it is important to report it to the police as soon as possible. If you wish to claim compensation for the abuse you have experienced, our team of professional, empathetic solicitors can help. Please call +0151 242 5111 for more information.