Shock figures show rise in domestic abuse across Stoke-on-Trent


The number of reported domestic abuse cases in Stoke-on-Trent has risen by almost 1,000 in the last year, shocking figures have revealed.

There were 943 more domestic violence with injury offences across the city between April 2013 and October 2014 than during the same period in 2012 to 2013.

Domestic abuse incidents where a crime had been committed grew by 8% overall in Stoke-on-Trent the statistics show.

Councillors are now battling to improve ways of tackling the problem and supporting charities who help domestic abuse victims.

The Pathway Project in Staffordshire works to support adults, young people and children who are experiencing or have been affected by domestic abuse.

Kathy Coe, director of Pathway Project and a previous victim of domestic violence, said: “The most frightening thing about abuse can be the feeling of helplessness.

“Once you decide to take back control of your life, and you can do that in small steps, you see that life can change.

“I can’t change the past, the damage it did, or the decisions I made, however, it has taken me down a different pathway to the one I might have ended up on.

“Pathway has opened up an opportunity to do something that helps other people and it is an amazing privilege to see something good coming from my experience.”

The project helps as many as  2,500 people a year – and growing.

Nationally, two women are killed every week by their current or former male partner.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has formed a Domestic Abuse Partnership strategy to deal with the issue.

The action plan sets out a number of priorities to be implemented in January, such as improved education.

Cllr Debra Gratton said: “We all know that restraining orders have very little effect.

“The support mechanisms as far as I can see, nationally, are not there.

“It’s very easy to look at the physical evidence, but I think we ought to remind ourselves that the mental injury is far greater than the physical injuries for these victims.”

Cllr Ann James said: “When domestic violence happens close to you and you become in involved, you then start to realise the effect that it actually has on that community and those neighbours.

“It seems as if nothing is done for those people who have to live in that area and have seen what is going on and reported it to the police.”


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