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15 December, 2021

Joint statement of intent on violence against women and girls in North Yorkshire and York

National Police Chiefs’ Council launch new framework on violence against women and girls

The National Police Chiefs’ Council have today (15 December 2021) launched a new framework on violence against women and girls. 

North Yorkshire Police Deputy Chief Constable Phil Cain said:

“We welcome the new national framework and fully support it.

“It clearly sets out what is required of policing to improve the response to violence against women and girls and the crimes that disproportionately affect women.

“North Yorkshire Police has already adopted violence against women and girls as a strategic priority, alongside domestic abuse and child abuse, to provide a greater focus and to build on the work that already goes on to investigate, bring offenders to justice and safeguard victims of all genders.

“Several years ago, we recognised the misogyny that underpins and facilitates violence against women and girls. We already record it as a motivator for hate aimed at women and girls.

“Over the past year our officers and staff have undergone some transformative domestic abuse training delivered by the national domestic abuse charity, SafeLives. Designed to challenge attitudes and behaviours, it provides a unique insight into the insidious nature of coercive control and domestic abuse, enabling officers to identify the signs of abuse, understand the behaviours in play and provide more effective safeguarding to victims.

“Managing the long-term safety of victims is also of paramount importance and we are at the forefront of a ground-breaking pilot scheme to improve the quality and transfer of information about non-molestation orders nationally.

“We recognise that violence against women and girls is a wider societal problem which requires a collaborative solution. We continue to work proactively with our partner agencies to identify both serial perpetrators of abuse and those who are displaying early signs of abusive behaviour.

“I cannot emphasise enough the commitment we have to reduce and eliminate the threat of harm in our communities and we will continue to work closely alongside our key partners to deliver a safer future for all.

“To anyone who is experiencing violence, abuse or intimidation, I would ask you to please speak to North Yorkshire Police. You will be listened to, you will be believed and respected and we will do everything in our power to help you.”

DCC Cain added:

“We expect the highest standards among our officers and staff and will not tolerate sexism, misogynistic or any discriminatory or abusive behaviour among our workforce. We have clear procedures and channels in place for this to be reported and will reinforce these over the coming months.  We will foster a zero tolerance approach to ensure everyday sexism is called out on every occasion.” 

North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Zoë Metcalfe said:

“I was elected on a mandate to take urgent action to make women and girls safer – and to counter domestic and sexual violence and abuse, as well as preventing offending behaviour.

“It is right that policing recognises that it has work to do to build trust and confidence and I expect North Yorkshire Police to deliver on its commitments under the national strategy – and we have agreed to work together to ensure that the causes and effects of violence against women and girls are addressed within a strategy which continues to transform the situation in York and North Yorkshire.

“My team are already listening to victims, with lived experience of these crimes – and working with organisations who support them, to assemble our joint strategy.

“I also recognise that working in partnership across the criminal justice and health landscape will be key to ensuring that we combine compassion and positive outcomes for victims, with a commitment to prevent harm before it happens. My team also already commission work to help offenders address the underlying causes of their offending behaviour and we will build further on that work.

“If you do not want to speak to the police, help is still available. IDAS is the largest specialist charity in Yorkshire which provides free, confidential support services to anyone in York or North Yorkshire experiencing or affected by domestic abuse or sexual violence. Visit www.idas.org.uk for more information or call 03000 110 110.”