Domestic Abuse

Domestic abuse is any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between people who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender.

All forms of abuse come from the abuser’s desire for power or control. Domestic abuse is never the fault of the survivor. Abuse can be real or threatened. It can happen occasionally or regularly.

The facts

  • One women in four and one in six men will experience domestic abuse at some stage in their lives.
  • On average a woman surviving domestic abuse will be assaulted 35 times before reporting it to the police.
  • Every minute, the police receive a call for assistance for domestic abuse – but less than 35% of abuse is reported to the police.
  • Violence against women by known men constitutes one quarter of all assaults recorded by the police.
  • Domestic abuse is rarely a one-off incident – it tends to be a regular pattern that builds up over time.
  • Domestic abuse survivors typically contact between 7 and 12 agencies before receiving the right service; increasing to between 12 and 15 for survivors from a black and minority ethnic background.
  • One in four violent crimes involves people in family or personal relationships.