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Plaid Cymru MP calls on Home Secretary to create Domestic Abuse Register

16 Mar 2021 3 minute read
Image by Tumisu from Pixabay.

A Plaid Cymru MP has called on the Home Secretary to create a Domestic Abuse Register to protect women.

Liz Saville Roberts, who also proposed the measure in June 2020, which was then rejected by the UK Government, reiterated her call to Priti Patel in the House of Commons in the wake of the death of Sarah Everard.

The death of the 33-year-old, who went missing while walking home from a friend’s house on 3 March, and whose body was later found in woodland in Kent, has sparked a public debate over women’s safety.

The Plaid Cymru MP says her proposal is a “means of preventing death and injury” because it enables the “early identification of abusive men” and added that the current system is “failing women”.

The Home Secretary declined the opportunity to support the idea, but said “it is right that we all work together to support women”.

Liz Saville Roberts said: “I take this opportunity to extend my personal sympathy to the family and friends of Sarah Everard at this horrific time.

“In June 2020, I proposed a domestic abuse register for the early identification of abusive men as a means of preventing death and injury.

“The Minister for Safeguarding rejected that, claiming that current systems for preventing violence against women were adequate.

“The National Police Chiefs’ Council also objected, on the grounds of cost and its capacity to manage such a register.”

‘Failing women’ 

She added: “I sense that the Government now recognise that the current system is failing women and that a properly funded, staffed and supported register for serial stalkers and domestic violence perpetrators is urgently needed.

“How will the Home Secretary ensure that such new proposals and funding properly account for the different legislative landscape in Wales, so that women in Wales are not excluded from future protections, which I hope are on their way?”

Home Secretary Priti Patel responded: “I think this is an important moment for this House and for all colleagues when it comes to Domestic Abuse Bill measures, which have been extensively debated in the House.

“The right hon. Lady has clearly spoken about Wales and the authority and responsibilities there. We are absolutely working across the devolved Administrations, because we want consistency of approach.

“It is right that we all work together to support women, and the Domestic Abuse Bill will absolutely do that.

“My hon. Friend the Minister for Safeguarding has worked extensively with all colleagues in the House on the issue that the right hon. Lady raises, but the fact of the matter is that we want that Bill to receive Royal Assent.

“It should do so very soon. We need that to happen to safeguard more and more women and give them the protection that they desperately need from their abusers.”

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