VAWG training for Cornwall Council members

13 May 2024

Safer Cornwall recently delivered a workshop to Council members on domestic abuse, sexual violence and violence against women and girls (VAWG). This was part of an in-person development day on 24th April 2024 and requested by the Council’s VAWG cross-party working group, which supports and promotes Cornwall’s response to VAWG.

The interactive workshop helped members understand the prevalence of domestic abuse and sexual violence (DASV) in Cornwall, to better understand violence against women and girls (VAWG), and how this related to domestic abuse and sexual violence.

The DASV team at Safer Cornwall provided a safe and respectful space in which to explore how we can all be impacted by these issues. In addition, they highlighted the amazing work that is being delivered across Cornwall to tackle DASV and VAWG, and asked members how they can support their communities and each other.

A total of 30 members took part in the workshops and found the sessions “engaging”, “informative”, “useful” and “full of guidance”.

“The councillor workshop was time well spent; the information was enlightening and having time for discussion meant that a breadth of topics came forward that one person would not think of themselves. It is very important that councillors understand how common domestic abuse and sexual violence are so that we can properly carry out democratic roles and champion the work being done, both to support people and bring about change.”

Councillor Julian German

An estimated 21,500 people have experienced domestic abuse (DA) in Cornwall in the past year, with women more than twice as likely to experience DA than men.

21% of all crimes reported to Devon and Cornwall Police relate to domestic abuse and since April 2023, we have received 18 referrals for Domestic Homicides Reviews (DHRs).

Young people are disproportionately affected by domestic abuse, both as children living in abusive households and as young adults experiencing abuse within their own relationships.

In relation to sexual violence, 14% of people aged 16 plus have experienced a sexual assault.  That equates to 56,900 people living in Cornwall and it is estimated that only 5–10% of victims of sexual assault will report to police.

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