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Government budget announcement: additional £19m isn’t even close

The unveiling of £19m in domestic abuse funding will do little to address the £393m needed to keep refuges and community-based services running sustainably.

Specialist services such as Women’s Centres continue to face a funding cliff edge at the end of the month, leaving women and families without the support needed to escape abusive and traumatic environments.

This follows a previous announcement to invest £150m in building 500 new prison places for women.

Almost two thirds of women in prison are reported to be survivors of domestic abuse; this is not the right environment to provide specialist, trauma-informed recovery support and directly contradicts Government’s own commitment to support survivors of domestic abuse.

Instead, an investment of £70.7m per year would safeguard the future of a network of Women’s Centres in local communities, saving £2.84 for every £1 spent.

Holistic support addresses the root causes which bring women into contact with the criminal justice system, such as learning to cope with trauma, and is the most effective way to break the cycle.