• More than 100 projects aimed at making our streets safer will be funded
  • The money forms part of the £120m Safe Streets Fund
  • The government is marking a year since publishing its strategy to tackle NCDs

£50 million of new funding will be made available to communities across England and Wales to make streets safer for everyone, the Home Secretary announced today, Monday 25 July.

The money will go to the police, local authorities, British Transport Police and relevant community groups across England and Wales to help prevent violence against women and girls in public places, neighborhood crime and anti-social behaviour.

These projects will be able to deploy additional CCTV and street lighting in their communities and expand work to change attitudes and behavior and prevent these crimes in the first place.

Northamptonshire, Humberside and Nottinghamshire PCCs are just some of the organizations that have already received funding in previous rounds. The money was spent on home security, community outreach and initiatives such as football and boxing to divert young people away from crime.

This is the fourth round of funding from the Safer Street Fund, bringing the total raised through this fund and the Women’s Nighttime Safety Fund to £125 million.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said:

It’s been a year since I launched our dedicated strategy to tackle violence against women and girls, and this year I’ve seen incredible work to support victims, prevent violence against women and girls, protect citizens and deliver justice.

Our core work with specialist groups is to provide practical support and change for women and girls in our communities, and the Safe Streets Fund continues to make a difference to the safety of women and girls at the community level.

It’s been a year since publication Strategy to combat violence against women and girls (VAWG).. Since the strategy was published, the Government has made a number of key commitments to keep women and girls safe everywhere – at home, online, at work and in public.

Safe Streets Fund

The Safe Streets Fund enables forces and local authorities to invest in transformative crime prevention initiatives.

The fund’s latest round is the first to accept applications from eligible civil society organisations, and among the successful applicants for this round is Her Centre, a London-based charity offering free and confidential advocacy, counselling, advice and training, related to domestic abuse, rape and sexual violence and other issues affecting women.

Her center has been awarded £140,000 to support victims of sexual harassment, assault, rape and stalking to rebuild their confidence to live without fear. Her Center will also use the funding to prevent acts of violence against women through active bystander training and engagement with young people to understand and respond to violence against women and girls in areas particularly affected by these issues.

Her centre’s CEO, Stacey Smith, said:

Her center wants to see more attention to men to stop harassing and threatening women. We are happy that this grant allows us to continue our work of educating the community in simple ways so that they can be active bystanders, so that abusive and violent men become the object of attention, instead of telling women to protect themselves. These relationships should be the exception, not the norm.

The Fund’s third round focused on helping to tackle violence against women and girls, with £25 million awarded to 57 projects across England and Wales.

The Government has also invested £5 million through the Women’s Nighttime Safety Fund, which has supported 22 pilot projects to improve the safety of women in public places at night, including in the nighttime economy.

Fighting street harassment

Marking a year since the publication of the NOWG Strategy, the government is also announcing the launch of a targeted consultation on whether to introduce a new offense for public sexual harassment. Experts from a range of sectors including charities, policing, law, education and transport are being invited to share their views on whether a specific new offense will help tackle the problem.

It follows a call for evidence on VAWG’s strategy, which received more than 180,000 responses, most of them from the public, and complements other work the government is doing to tackle public sexual harassment, such as new police leadership and upcoming new guidelines for prosecutors to enforce existing laws, as well as the “Enough” behavior change campaign.

Preventing Domestic Violence and Stalking

The GBV strategy made it clear that in addition to supporting victims, we also need to prevent crime from taking place.

Over the past two years, the Home Office has allocated more than £25m to the Police and Crime Commissioners to support increased access to domestic violence intervention and the prosecution of offenders. These interventions aim to reduce offender risk and hold them accountable, including through group or individual behavior change programs.

The Early Awareness Stalking Intervention Programme, overseen by West Midlands Police and the Crime Commissioner and funded by the Home Office, is one of the first attempts in England and Wales to provide rehabilitative treatment for stalkers which aims to improve the victim/victim. security.

West Midlands Victims Commissioner Nicky Brennan said:

There is no excuse for any abuse. Reducing crime is of the utmost importance, which is why we work hard on prevention and early intervention in the West Midlands, particularly to tackle violence against women and girls.

That’s why we’re working with West Midlands Police, Midlands Psychological Services, Black Women’s Aid, the Alice Ruggles Trust and the University of Derby to trial and evaluate an early stalking intervention across the West Midlands with funding from the Home Office for 2021. Fund of criminals.

Early results are promising, we have already learned a lot and look forward to a full evaluation early next year.

Support for victims of intimate image abuse

To support victims of non-consensual sharing of intimate images, which is a very serious and damaging problem, the Home Office has increased funding for the Revenge Porn Helpline to £120,000 in the 2021/2 financial year. The helpline supports victims of non-consensual sharing of intimate images by providing confidential support and advice, helping to report and remove content from the internet, offering advice and support on reporting crimes to the police and providing specialist referrals and long-term support for victims.

This financial year the Home Office is increasing this funding to a further £150,000 so that the Helpline can continue to provide expert support to victims of intimate image abuse.

Revenge Porn Helpline Manager Sophie Mortimer said:

The Strategy for Combating Violence Against Women gives much-needed attention to providing essential assistance and support to people affected by violence against women and girls.

The extra funding that the Revenge Porn Helpline received during the pandemic, consolidated as part of the new strategy, has enabled us to provide meaningful and effective support to people affected by pornography abuse. The helpline sees a wide range of challenging behaviors that require expert practitioners to provide direct support and report and remove intimate images shared without consent. It’s hard and time-consuming work, but to date it has achieved the removal of over 260,000 individual pieces of content on behalf of nearly 15,000 people.

This support for victims of intimate image abuse comes alongside action under the Domestic Violence Act 2021 to strengthen legislation in this area to ensure that those who threaten to share intimate images without consent and with intent to cause distress are prosecuted and on trial for their actions.

Ratification of the Istanbul Convention

The Government is also pleased to announce the ratification of the Istanbul Convention.

In the GBV Strategy, the government committed to ratify the Council of Europe Convention on Violence against Women and Domestic Violence, commonly known as the Istanbul Convention. The convention is the gold standard international charter for the protection of women and girls, and since its signing in 2012, the government has worked to significantly strengthen the legal framework and introduce a wide range of tools to better protect victims.

Our measures to protect women and girls from violence are among the strongest in the world and in some respects go beyond what the Convention requires.

Ratification sends a strong signal that the UK continues to take violence against women and girls seriously and will help us continue to lead the way in tackling these horrific crimes.

Transforming rape investigations

After taking a hard and honest look at how the whole criminal justice system handles rape cases through the Rape Review, the Home Office is committing to funding Operation Soteria, a program to change the way rape investigations are conducted and progressed, focusing on the suspect, not the victim . After an initial allocation of five forces, the government announced earlier this year that an additional 14 forces would take part in Operation Sateria.

This work will form the basis of a new national operational model for rape investigations, which will be available to all forces from June 2023. Key program outcomes to date have been published in Update on the progress of the rape investigation June 16. It is encouraging that we are seeing more victims reporting crimes to the police, more referrals from the police to the CPS and an increase in the number of suspects being charged.

A behavior change campaign

In March 2022, we launched our multi-year national awareness campaign ‘Enough’ across England and Wales. With television ads, billboards, digital content and the campaign’s extensive website, the campaign aims to challenge harmful behaviors that exist in society, educate young people about healthy relationships and consent, and ensure that victims can recognize abuse and receive support.


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