Decision details

Domestic Abuse Update and review of commissioned services

Decision Maker: Public Protection and Communities Scrutiny Committee

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


Consideration was given to the Community Strategy Safety Co-ordinator – Domestic Abuse lead, which provided the Committee with an overview and update of the work that was being undertaken in relation to Domestic Abuse within Lincolnshire, especially in light of COVID-19.


Members were advised that on average over the last four years there had been over 10,000 domestic abuse incidents reported to Lincolnshire Police each year, of which £6500 were standard risk incidents; around 25% were graded as medium risk and 8% were high risk. Since the introduction of the Statutory Domestic Homicide Reviews in April 2011 there had been 17 cases involving 25 deaths that have met the criteria for a domestic homicide review in Lincolnshire.


During the Covid-19 Pandemic, referrals to MARAC and the Domestic Abuse Outreach Service (EDAN Lincs) had remained stable. General enquires to EDAN Lincs by way of telephone calls, emails and the website have increased, however these had not translated into referrals. Refuges in Lincolnshire had remained at usual capacity with no increase in demand and incidents reported to the police had remained stable with some uplift seen on bank holiday weekends.


The Domestic Abuse Priority Group, MARAC EDAN Lincs had continued to operate effectively throughout the pandemic. All refuges had also continued to operate and support victims and children of domestic abuse in Lincolnshire. 


The Committee were informed that the key elements of focus for the partnership over the next sixth months alongside maintaining all services in relation to Domestic Abuse were to focus on recovery planning and preparing  for changes in government guidance and proceeding with the planned consultation in relation to the domestic abuse bill and governance arrangements in Lincolnshire.


It was noted that Lincolnshire County Council had been successful in receiving funding from a bid to MHCLG for £187,000 to support the development of consistent Countywide sanctuary scheme to help people suffering from domestic abuse to stay in their own homes where appropriate.


Members discussed the report and during the discussion the following points were noted:


·       Members questioned why referrals to refuge in Lincolnshire during the covid-19 pandemic were much lower than in some areas of the country. This was due to the fact that Lincolnshire County Council were generally successful at moving people to alternative accommodation and were well supported by the district councils on this.

·       It was agreed that a breakdown of male and female data be provided to the Committee where possible. However, due to a lack of reporting from male victims, reported cases were predominantly female.

·       The Sanctuary scheme supported victims to stay in their home if it was appropriate to do so. If the decision was made to keep somebody in their own home, a risk assessment of the property would be carried out, as well as a safety assessment with the victim to look at routines regular contacts. Officers would also work with the police to ensure that the perpetrator wasn't part of the safety planning and all elements were put in place to ensure that the victim was protected from that person. Often cases were managed through Multi-agency risk assessment conference where all officers were present and would discuss the best way forward to work with the victim and provide support where possible. 

·       Members acknowledged the difficulty in obtaining data for financial, emotional and coercive control abuse as these types of abuse were often harder to identify and record. However, MARAC recorded data locally which was used to recognise issues and look at patterns and put in place solutions.

·       All statutory agencies received training around coercive control behaviour. The Council worked with Hairdressers, barbers, estate agents and similar agencies to help them to identify coercive control behaviours.

·       Members welcomed the programme to try to support perpetrators in breaking habits and behaviours.

·       There was currently no update on the code word that could be used by victims to highlight that they were in immediate danger as a result of domestic abuse.

·       The relationship between district councils and the County Council was commended and it had a positive impact on the domestic support available.

·       Services had been innovative in the way that they had managed staffing during the covid-19 pandemic and had utilised staff and re-deployed staff into areas that needed the most support.

·       Members were advised to call 999 if they believed somebody was in immediate danger as a result of domestic abuse. However, if no immediate danger identified and but Members were concerned they were encouraged to contact EDAN Lincs to be directed to the right channels of support.

·       The EDAN Lincs contact details were available on their website.





          That the report be noted.


Publication date: 07/09/2020

Date of decision: 28/07/2020

Decided at meeting: 28/07/2020 - Public Protection and Communities Scrutiny Committee

Accompanying Documents:



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