Concern at numbers of domestic abuse cases closed without any further action taken
Responding to today's report from Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS), APCC Victims Lead and London Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Sophie Linden said: "This report recognises the positive response police forces made in supporting victims of domestic abuse during the Covid-19 pandemic.
"But it also highlights issues around court backlogs and the numbers of domestic abuse cases closed without any further action taken. HMICFRS makes a number of recommendations to reverse the trend of victims disengaging from the criminal justice process. We need police forces and the Government to drive these improvements urgently and to ensure there are the resources to sustain them.
"Meanwhile, I would like to pay tribute to my Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) colleagues who invested additional money in victim support services last year. The pandemic put a huge strain on many families, with charities reporting an increase in demand for their services. Throughout lockdown PCCs were in regular contact with these commissioned services to understand what was needed. There was an abundance of innovative and flexible work going on to reach out to those at risk from abuse, highlighting that they could still leave home, get the support they need, and not suffer in silence.
"The Association of Police and Crime Commissioners has published Protecting the vulnerable during the Covid-19 crisis, which provides a snapshot of some of this work. It demonstrates how PCCs, recognising the significant impact on victims trapped indoors with perpetrators, ensured funding, support, online resources, and live chat facilities were made available to the most vulnerable across our communities."