Domestic and Sexual Violence and Abuse

Why is it an issue?

Domestic and sexual violence and abuse has the highest repeat victimisation of any crime, and can have a major impact on the physical and emotional health of adults and children.

What is the position in Devon?

It is estimated that there 22,000 victims of domestic violence in Devon each year, with 6,000 victims of sexual assault (often perpetrated by a partner). Last year police in Devon attended an average of one domestic violence incident every hour (8,798 incidents in 2010-11).

What is the evidence of effective interventions?

It is essential to address domestic and sexual violence and abuse from a life course perspective. This approach explicitly acknowledges the impact of early abuse on later risk, the implications of abuse on the whole family and the value of primary prevention of abuse.

Analysis of the multi-agency safeguarding hub found that the neediest families had three out of four risk factors including; substance/alcohol misuse, mental health, domestic violence and sexual abuse in the family. There are a range of services needed including acute services through to universal services for all children. There is a need to understand and support the needs of young people in transition and services to support them. The topic pages provide the evidence base for the services provided. In 2010-11 specialist services for families reached 3,000 men women and children in Devon.