Domestic Violence and the Police

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Assessment 1- The Social Context of Family Life in Britain
In this essay I have chosen to study and discuss an article about domestic violence in Britain. The aspects I have chosen to concentrate on are the police response to domestic abuse, recent government initiatives and the financial and logistical problems faced by women who are trying to escape from violent domestic situations. The statistics relating to domestic violence are very disturbing. According to the Women’s Aid website, one incident of domestic violence per minute is reported, with an alarming two deaths a week perpetrated by a current or former partner. In addition to this, they report that one in four women have suffered some kind of violence in the home. The statistics, from the British Crime Survey 2012, only represent reported violence, and associations who support women that have suffered violence, suspect that many more incidents go unreported(Walby & Allen, 2004). So what the definition of domestic violence? The government definition of domestic violence is “Any incident of threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional), between adults who are or have been intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality”. Domestic violence is not a new phenomenon. Before the 1970’s it was something that happened, but was kept firmly behind closed doors and treated as a private matter. The rise of feminism in the 1970’s and the work done with battered women in refuges at that time, led to a heightened awareness of the problem. Studies completed by feminists at the time claimed to have found a link between the dominance of men in society and the way that incidences of domestic violence were ignored or denied. Conservatives at that time debated the findings and claimed that violence towards women had more to do with the fragmentation of family life and “dysfunctional families”. They also claimed that the statistics were...
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