24 January, 2019

Success for Commissioner’s bid for new Women’s Wellness Centre in York

A new centre focused on improving support for vulnerable female offenders and women at risk of entering the criminal justice system is to be opened in York after a £400,000 bid for government funding was accepted by the Ministry of Justice.

North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan proposed the York Women’s Wellness Centre after seeing there was a need for additional support of vulnerable women in the criminal justice system.

Julia has campaigned for more community-based help and recently sat on a government panel to look at further improvements nationwide.

The centre will respond to the distinct needs of women and will bring together, under one roof, organisations who are able to provide a family-friendly support package developed to reduce the risk of offending in the city.

The Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner has committed to fund women’s specialists to provide women-centred, trauma informed services and offer expert support around domestic violence, risk of sexual exploitation, and to help women in need to build emotional health, wellbeing and resilience.

Alongside the service funded by the Commissioner, a suite of health, welfare and criminal justice support will be available at the Centre, and discussions are ongoing with partners to bring together the best possible services for women, and their families, in need of help in the city.

Commissioner Julia Mulligan said:

“All too often the criminal justice system does not give women the support they need to turn their lives around. This has a significant impact on them and their families but also on wider society – it should be in all our interests to ensure we reduce offending and help those who are vulnerable.

“This Women’s Wellness Centre will be a vital part of our efforts in York where there is a desperate need for more support to be provided, and I am delighted the Ministry of Justice agree with their commitment to invest £400,000.

“The money allows us to take the next steps to get the Centre up and running, securing a city centre location, developing partnerships and bringing a step change to the support of women who need our help.”

It is hoped the centre will be open by the summer. Further announcements will be made in the near future.