- Durham County Council are set to receive £1,167,170 to help fund a new duty to ensure victims and their children are able to access life-saving support in safe accommodation.
- A total of £125 million has been allocated to councils across England to support domestic abuse victims and their children.
- This new funding is part of the Conservative Government’s landmark Domestic Abuse Bill and package of comprehensive support for victims.
Domestic abuse victims and their children living in County Durham will be able to receive more support thanks to extra Government funding.
The extra money will help victims and their children access life-saving support in safe accommodation, including advocacy, counselling, and therapy in safe locations such as refuges or specialist safe accommodation, where victims and their children can go to get away from their abusers.
In total, councils across England will receive £125 million. Durham County Council will receive £1,167,170.
Under a new duty, which was a key Conservative manifesto commitment at the last election, councils will be required to provide support to domestic abuse victims and their children within safe accommodation services, where needs have been identified.
It will come into force later this year with the passage of the landmark Domestic Abuse Bill, with funding announced in advance so local authorities know how much they will receive for these vital services and can begin to plan.
This funding is part of a wider package of support for victims of rape and domestic abuse, with a £40 million funding boost for victim support services announced on 1 February 2021, building on the unprecedented £76 million pledged in May 2020 to ensure vital services including refuges, helplines and counselling remain accessible throughout the pandemic.
In January 2021, the Conservative Government also launched the ‘Ask for ANI’ codeword scheme, which provides victims of domestic abuse access to immediate help from the police or other support services from their local pharmacy.
The Government is determined to support vulnerable people throughout the pandemic, and is working closely with councils, charities and other partners to ensure they get the support they need.
Commenting, Dehenna Davison MP said:
“Domestic abuse is a devastating crime that ruins lives, which is why this Conservative Government’s commitment to empowering and protecting victims is so important.
“The £1,167,170 announced today for Durham County Council will ensure that anyone who needs to access safe accommodation and the support services they need to recover and rebuild their lives will be able to do so, and is part of a wider package of support we have put in place for victims of rape and domestic abuse.
“In taking another big step towards helping break the cycle of domestic abuse and protecting some of the most vulnerable in our society, we are transforming our response to victims and will help them move forward with their lives. Anyone who is experiencing violence at home, or knows someone who might be, it is important to remember that you can leave your home and seek help. Pharmacies across the UK have in place the Ask for Ani scheme and you can contact the domestic abuse hotline on 0808 2000 247.”
Also commenting, Minister for Rough Sleeping and Housing Eddie Hughes said:
“Domestic abuse is a heinous crime which threatens the lives of victims in their own homes where they should feel safe. So it’s right that we’re giving victims support in safe accommodation and providing councils with money to deliver essential services that will help them and their children rebuild their lives.
“This is part of a long-term strategy to provide broader support for domestic abuse victims both in safe accommodation like refuges and in their homes.”