Domestic abuse in the news

This article looks at an initiative within health. A senior lecturer with a background in domestic abuse practice has designed a board game to help health professionals identify and manage DA. (Nursing Standard)

A nurse lecturer has developed a board game to help healthcare professionals recognise and respond to domestic violence and abuse.

The Domestic Abuse Training Game was devised to equip staff in health services with the knowledge and confidence to respond to domestic abuse concerns by asking appropriate questions and offering support.

University of Sheffield school of nursing and midwifery senior lecturer, and interpersonal violence research group lead, Parveen Ali, has worked with specialists in health and social care training resources, Focus Games, to develop the idea.

This sad article has led to a campaign by the Daily Mirror to keep children safe from abusive parents. Their investigation has revealed issues around social worker training can also vary between universities and even local authorities. All of the children in their investigation, died at the hands of parents which either police, social workers and sometimes even family courts knew to be violent. Fifty-two were killed by fathers known to authorities for domestic abuse. Another seven were killed by both parents in cases where the dads had similar histories. (Daily Mirror)

At least 63 children have been killed after the law allowed them to be left with violent parents.

The scandalous toll is revealed in the Sunday Mirror's nine-month probe which shows how the authorities were forced to honour dangerous parents’ human rights — despite knowing of their abusive behaviour.

Today we are launching a campaign to demand changes to the law. Our probe reveals professionals knew each of the innocent kids was in the clutches of someone with a history of abuse.

Yet there is currently no law to protect them.

Childhood trauma is surprisingly common and understandably painful, but healing is possible. I didn't figure out what love wasn’t until I went through my tsunami of a divorce and came face-to-face with the ongoing trauma causing by experiences of childhood abuse — all at the same time.

You see, I was a victim (sorry, I hate that word, but it is what it is) of childhood abuse, what those in the clinical world refer to as Adverse Childhood Experiences...

This tragic case has highlighted a very intimate issue about strangulation in sex games. The issue is when it does end in a fatality and how the truth can ever be known because only two people were present. (The Guardian Online)

Too many women’s lives are ending after what those accused of their deaths say were ‘sex games gone wrong’. But how did strangling ever become normalised?

Jan Wynne-Jones knows almost nothing about her daughter Vicky’s last living moments. She only knows that Vicky, a tall, blonde, 25-year-old newlywed who worked as an account manager and who could calculate a balance sheet or assemble a wardrobe without breaking a sweat, was strangled by her husband one night in November in 2009.

We often forget of the link between modern slavery and domestic servitude. There is a lot of work within modern slavery and trafficking such as this article highlights. We all need to be mindful that such issues with domestic abuse as forced marriage, coercive control and so called "honour" may also be linked to trafficking of individuals and thereby reflect in the need to engage with agencies supporting and investigating modern slavery. (National Crime Agency Website)

44 people have been arrested and 35 potential victims have been identified in the UK as part of a Europe-wide operation targeting modern slavery and human trafficking.

The week of action, which took place between 17 and 23 June, was co-ordinated in the UK by the National Crime Agency, and involved 18 different police forces as well as Border Force and Immigration Enforcement...

Of the 35 potential victims identified and safeguarded 18 were minors, and were most often subject to labour and criminal exploitation, as well as sexual exploitation and domestic servitude.

Willingness to intervene when one becomes aware of a case of intimate partner violence against women (IPVAW) reflects the level of tolerance and acceptance of this type of violence in society. Increasing the likelihood of intervention to help victims of IPVAW is also a target for prevention strategies aiming to increase informal social control of IPVAW. In this study, we present the development and validation of the Willingness to Intervene in Cases of Intimate Partner Violence (WI-IPVAW) scale. 

With our own UK government speeding through a DA Bill at the moment, this article discusses Myanmar and a 2013 piece of legislation, still awaiting a conclusion. This article contains a local Burmese saying, “If you beat your wife until her bones are broken, she will love with all her heart.” Myanmar’s Penal Code, which dates back to when it was Burma, seems outdated and obsolete. (Reuters News)

Cradling her one-year-old daughter in a house in southern Myanmar, 22-year-old Nu Nu Aye recalled the reasons her husband gave for beating her. She hadn’t looked after his rooster. She wouldn’t have sex with him. In a meeting brokered by a village elder, he said he would beat her when “necessary”. “His abuse got worse after that,” she said. Finally, he tried to strangle her while she was sleeping.

This article highlights that there is a disatisfaction in sentences (when cases do result in trial), being too lenient. It also comments on the recent drop in prosecutions for rape after recent figures revealed the time taken to charge suspects has more than doubled in the past seven years. There was a 23 per cent drop in the number of rape cases taken on by the CPS in the 12 months to 2017-18, despite a 16 per cent increase in police-recorded rape over the same period. (The Independent)

Victims of stalking, domestic abuse and child abuse could be given new legal rights to challenge unduly lenient sentences handed to their perpetrators.

They have previously been stopped from taking cases to the Court of Appeal because such offences are not included in a statutory scheme which provides victims with a legal right to challenge “unduly lenient” sentences.

This has meant victims of stalking, domestic abuse and child abuse have not been able to ask the Attorney General to review any prison term.

This is an absolutely shocking case from Bucks, yet at no time has any news article highlighted it as domestic abuse? This perpetrator had insidiously developed intimate relationships with an elderly man whom he subsequently poisoned and killed to inherit from. He then went on to seduce an elderly spinster, who was duped with "religious" messages into handing over money to him before her death in 2017. This case includes faith abuse, financial abuse, mental health, drugs and alcohol, abuse of the elderly and gaslighting to name a few. He used his Christian upbringing to prey on his two victims even though they were from different denominations. This case shows that the drive to control, manipulate and dominate was stronger than faith, sexuality or conscience. The police investigation uncovered a strategy which was well documented with future targets already identified! (BBC News)

There is "no doubt" a churchwarden who murdered an author to inherit his estate would have gone on to kill again, his victim's brother has said. Benjamin Field, 28, manipulated 69-year-old Peter Farquhar for financial gain and tried to make his death look like an accident or suicide.

This article comes from Corndell University in New York State; although this is a US article, the issues around such stalking are global.. They have developed a sophisticated tool to highlight and help identify hacking by ex partners in domestic abuse cases. It appears that technical experts now share their knowledge with justice centres as well as learning about the subtleties of stalking and how to address them without increasing the risk to a victim. The research has also led to a spyware scanning tool for use in IPV (Intimate Partner Violence) which links from the article. (Corndell Chronicle)

A new clinical model developed by Cornell Tech researchers aims to respond systematically and effectively to the growing array of digital threats against victims of intimate partner violence. Working with the New York City Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, the researchers created and piloted a questionnaire, a spyware scanning tool and a diagram for assessing clients’ digital footprints.