Family Lives Responds To: 'Community resolutions' used in 10,000 serious violence cases

News that Community Resolutions were used in 2,488 domestic violence cases in 2012 is of concern. While every case should be based on its individual merits with the wishes of the victim taken into account, the police have a duty to protect wider society from violent individuals who may re-offend.  Domestic or Relationship abuse should not be regarded as a ‘low-level’ crime and its impact on adults, children and the wider family can have long lasting effects.  It is often the case that violent and aggressive partners coerce partners into retracting statements or not proceeding further with prosecution.  Sadly violence also occurs in teenage relationships - a worrying trend that needs to be tackled immediately.  Family Lives works in schools to empower children and young people to build resilience to relationship aggression or sexualised violence and to prevent individuals from becoming perpetrators or bullies.  Whilst a prosecution or prison sentence can have life changing implications – a clear message does need to be sent out that violence on the streets and behind closed doors is a social taboo which has consequences.  In previous years, calls to Family Lives’ free 24/7 helpline from parents concerning their child’s aggression increased year on year. There are many reasons that may explain why some people  behave in an aggressive way.  Answers commonly include sudden and unpredictable changes to the family routine, parental domestic violence which can cause the anger and hurt to spill out at home.  Whatever the reasons, children, parents, families and ultimately society will pay a huge cost if this growing area of concern is not addressed and parents must feel able to come forward to seek support without worrying about being judged.  We support parents and adult carers to have a stronger understanding of how to discuss the issues of teen aggression and relationship abuse.  Investing in parenting skills is essential as children are all different and will all face different challenges as they grow and develop. The earlier that preventative support is delivered, the more effective it can be.”

For more information visit www.familylives.org.uk or call Family Lives’ Helpline on 0808 800 2222." 

Jeremy Todd, Family Lives Chief Executive