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The Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership

The Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership delivers multi-agency improvement activity to tackle domestic abuse.

Domestic abuse in Sunderland

The Sunderland domestic violence health needs assessment undertaken in June 2013 identified that around 6,000 domestic abuse incidents are reported to the Police each year. However it is heavily under reported and it was estimated that between 11,600 and 15,600 people experienced domestic abuse in the last year, Over 53,800 adults living in Sunderland are estimated to have experienced domestic abuse at some point in their lives.

Domestic abuse very much a gendered crime that is underpinned by power and control.

1 in 4 women experience DV at some point in their lives and 1 in 10 women have experienced it at least once in the last year (Home Office 2010). One in six men experience domestic abuse but this is far less reliable as it is characterised by one-off incidents whereas women experience greater frequency and severity of abuse.

On average, two women are killed every week by their current or ex-partner (Home Office Homicide Statistics). Around 45% of all female homicides each year are domestic homicides compared to 5-8% for male homicides.

Nationally, a call is made to the police every 30 seconds for someone requesting assistance for domestic abuse.

Domestic abuse is rarely one-off incident. It on average 35 assaults before a victim comes forward to report to the police.

It impacts negatively on children such as their emotional and physical wellbeing, their behaviour and attendance at school, feelings of blame, and social adjustment. Around 9 out of 10 children are in the same or the next room when domestic abuse incidents happen between their parents - and over 40% of these children will try and intervene to protect their family. In Sunderland, around 55% of child protection plans have domestic violence as the most prevalent issue in the families. There may also be parental drug and alcohol misuse and mental ill health.

It is high-cost and responding to and dealing with the effects of domestic abuse costs almost £80 million a year in Sunderland, which is comparable to other public health priorities such as smoking and obesity.

What does the Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership do?

The Sunderland Domestic Violence Partnership (SDVP) co-ordinates and oversees delivery of those aspects of the Safer Sunderland Strategy and delivery plan that relate to domestic violence and abuse. It also contributes towards tackling other forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG).

A summary of its activity is included within the Safer Sunderland Partnership's annual report. It also supports the Police and Crime Commissioner in the delivery of the regional VAWG strategy; and supports delivery of the national VAWG strategy.

Who sits on the SDVP?

Membership of the Sunderland Domestic Violence partnership (SDVP) consists of representatives who can legitimately make decisions on behalf of their organisation. Each member of the SDVP acts as the key point of contact for their organisation or service in relation to tackling domestic violence and abuse.

Membership includes:

  • Sunderland City Council (covering a range of services)
  • Together for Children Sunderland
  • Gentoo
  • Wearside Women in Need (WWIN)
  • Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)
  • City Hospital Sunderland (CHS)
  • South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust (STNHSFT)
  • Northumbria Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (NTW)
  • National Probation Service (NPS)
  • Northumbria Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC)
  • Northumbria Police
  • Sunderland Safeguarding Children's Board representative (SSCB)
  • Sunderland Safeguarding Adults Board representative (SSAB)
  • A range of other Voluntary and Community Sector Partners (including Sunderland Counselling Services, Impact Family Services, Changing Lives)



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