A report setting out Birmingham’s commitment to preventing domestic abuse is due to go to the city council’s cabinet.
The Birmingham Domestic Abuse Prevention Strategy 2017-2020, in line with national guidelines, looks at adults who are experiencing – or have experienced – domestic abuse, perpetrators, children exposed to it and how the general population can play their part in preventing it.
The city council and Birmingham Community Safety Partnership will be working with partner agencies across health, criminal justice and the voluntary sector to ensure and co-ordinated and city-wide approach.
Key to the strategy is challenging deep-rooted attitudes, prioritising early intervention, and strong partnership working to meet local needs.
Councillor Paulette Hamilton, cabinet member for health and social care, said: “Domestic abuse can cause untold harm to individuals, families and communities. Although here in Birmingham we have a strong history of working together to tackle this social ill, evidence suggests that across the country – and in Birmingham – that domestic abuse is increasing and more people are at risk. As our public services are shrinking we need to find new ways of keeping our communities safe.
“Our ultimate goal is to have a city free from domestic abuse but this depends on achieving changes in attitude and behaviour across all ages and cultures, and will depend on all communities taking a lead. We can only do this together, and we must do this together.”
Maureen Connolly, CEO Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid and Vice Chair of Birmingham’s Violence against Women and Children Steering Group, added: “Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid very much welcomes the approach taken in developing Birmingham’s Domestic Abuse Prevention Strategy.
“It offers a framework that should benefit the lives of abused women and children across the communities of Birmingham. I look forward to the consultation process bringing to life the aims and aspirations of stakeholders in improving safety to all victims of abuse.”
Sahdaish Pall, Domestic Violence Service Manager – Accord Group, added further endorsement and said: “Domestic and sexual violence and abuse have a devastating impact on victims and their families.
“It is imperative that, collectively, we seek to better protect and support victims, and bring perpetrators to account. The Accord Group are glad to see that this strategy recognises the excellent partnership working already taking place across the city, but also goes one step further by identifying what preventive work needs to take place to help build healthier relationships to eliminate domestic violence and abuse.
“We are also glad to see that support for BME communities is specifically mentioned as these communities often come across significant barriers to seeking support.”
The report will go to the city council’s cabinet on 18 October.