The ‘i’ paper today has a dramatic and troubling front page. “Police letting off domestic abusers with a slap on the wrist” it proclaims.
Glossing quickly over the unfortunate irony to the metaphor, the full story is carried in the commuter tabloid’s grown up sibling, the Independent, with a rather more honest title. “Violent partners let off with ‘slap on the wrist’ orders, says Labour.”
The story heralds a speech today by Yvette Cooper, shadow home secretary, which will flesh out more details on Labour’s proposed new legislation that will, among other changes, ban the use of Community Resolution Orders (CROs) in cases of domestic violence. The story is fleshed out with statistics and quotes from Women’s Aid to illustrate and explain that domestic violence is not a trivial crime, it rarely occurs as a one-off, and should therefore be inappropriate for these community settlements. CROs are primarily designed to deal with very minor offences and anti-social behaviour offences by minors.
What is the scale of use of these orders? Well we are told that their use has more than doubled in the past five years [Read more…]