Briefing

Violence against women and girls: Istanbul Convention progress report

The Home Office has published the second progress report on the UK's ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing violence against women and domestic violence (Istanbul convention), which describes actions taken since the publication of the first report in 2017. The progress report provides a breakdown of progress by the four nations relating to the prosecution, protection and prevention of violence against women and girls.

Rape Crisis Tyneside and Northumberland Group Work

Rape Crisis Tyneside and Northumberland is running a 6-week evening group from mid-February 2019 in central Newcastle. This group is for any woman aged 16 or over who lives, works or studies in the Newcastle area and has experienced sexual violence at any time in her life. The group offers a safe, supportive space to meet other women, explore myths around sexual violence and practice self-care and positive coping mechanisms. For further information, please call 0191 2220272 or email enquiries@rctn.org.uk.

Organised crime: child sexual exploitation

The Home Office has published analysis of the scale and economic cost of organised crime, including child sexual exploitation, over 2015/16. Findings include: in 2015 it is estimated that there were 6,850 victims of child sexual exploitation; the social and economic cost of child sexual exploitation over the 2015/16 financial year is estimated to be £2.3 billion. Source: NSPCC Caspar Alert. 

Women and Rough Sleeping

St Mungo’s has commissioned researchers from the University of York Centre for Housing Policy, Joanne Bretherton and Nicholas Pleace, to conduct a rapid evidence review exploring women's experiences of rough sleeping. The report presents fresh analysis of data from London and across England, alongside new research with women who have slept rough. Women sleeping rough are at risk of gender-based violence and abuse before, during, and after their time on the streets.

Police accuse prosecutors of 'raising bar' for rape cases after scandal over collapsed trials

Last week, The Independent reported that senior police officers have accused prosecutors of “raising the bar” for evidence required to take rapists to court, following a scandal over collapsed cases. Victims’ groups say women reporting rape are frequently told their case will not reach court unless they allow police access to their mobile phones and private communications, or sign statements that let investigators access their health records and other personal information. Read the full article here

Sexual harassment of women & girls in public spaces: Women & Equalities Select Committee publishes its report

The Women and Equalities Committee has published its report on sexual harassment of women and girls in public places. The report calls on the Government to tackle public sexual harassment of women and girls urgently and makes seven key recommendations for action. The Committee said the UK Government has a strong reputation for taking seriously the prevention of sexual abuse and violence overseas, but is failing to address the problem at home.

Chronicle: sexual offences conviction rates in the North East

The Chronicle has reported on the new data regarding conviction rates for sexual offences in the North East. More than 8,000 offences were reported to police in the North East last year, but only 531 people were brought to justice for them. The data shows that when offenders do appear in court the conviction rate is reasonably high, with 82% of prosecutions in the region being successful.

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