New VAWG strategy must be backed up with sustainable funding, says Refuge


In response to the Government’s new violence against women and girls (VAWG) strategy launched today (6 March, 2019), our chief executive, Sandra Horley, says: “Refuge welcomes the Government’s refreshed Violence Against Women and Girls strategy and its ongoing commitment to address violence and abuse; an issue which is experienced by one woman in four across the country and over 800,000 children every year.

“Refuge has been a lead voice in highlighting the pervasive and pernicious nature of technological abuse experienced by so many women and is heart-warmed to see the Government giving this issue more attention in today’s strategy. Given almost all of the 6,500 women and children Refuge supports every day share experiences of tech abuse, this is welcome news.

“Equally pleasing is the Government’s recognition of the need to provide more support to women who experience sexual abuse; around one third of women who accessed our services in 2018 experienced sexual violence, with disclosure of sexual abuse growing year to year.

“We look forward to working with the Government to bring this new strategy to bear but would urge the Government to share its plans on how not only new but current specialist services for women who experience violence will be funded. As we progress our work to build and shape the Domestic Abuse Bill, Refuge will be championing the need for increased funding to be injected into specialist services; funding which has decreased year on year. Without adequate specialist support, such as services like women’s refuges, women may be forced to stay with their violent partner, unable to escape abuse and fear. “

Find out more about the Government’s VAWG strategy.

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