Home Affairs Committee report fails to tackle the need to protect the most vulnerable Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights

Responding to the Home Affairs Committee Report on violence against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights released today, Amnesty International UK Women's rights's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights campaign manager Heather Harvey said:

“We’re delighted that the Committee has recognised the need for a cohesive, overall strategy in tackling violence against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights. This is something that Amnesty International has long been calling for. An integrated strategy is an international obligation according to the UN Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights, which the UK Government has a duty to fulfil.

“The report brings together a variety of factors that are fundamental to stemming the tide violence affecting Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights, including the need for prevention and early intervention through public campaigning and seeking to challenge attitudes that tolerate violence against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights.

“It falls short however of calling on the Government to protect one of the most vulnerable groups of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights living in the UK - Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights with insecure immigration status.

“Keith Vaz is correct in his conclusion that the UK Government is failing to protect Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights in a variety of ways, including a shortage of refuge space. However even if the Government could provide an adequate amount of space, that would amount to nothing for hundreds of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights who would really need it: those who are currently not able to access refuges because of their immigration status.

“The Government has an international duty to ensure that all Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights under its jurisdiction are shielded from violence and abuse.

“In order to do this, it should provide an exemption to the ‘no recourse’ rule where Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights are left unable to access even basic levels of protection and support, simply because of their vulnerable immigration status.”

Also responding to the findings contained in the report, End Violence Against Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights Coalition manager Holly Dustin said:

“It is certainly the case that there is a desperate shortage of refuge places for Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and that there is indeed a ‘postcode lottery’ of specialist support services to support Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights who have been victims of violence.

“Every year three million Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights in the UK experience domestic violence, trafficking, stalking, rape or another form of violence. At the moment the level of specialist support is insufficient. There are widening gaps in the support system across the UK where millions of Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights cannot access the services they need.

“One in three local authorities don’t have any support services for Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights affected by violence and only one in ten local authorities in the UK have services that address issues that particularly affect Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights from black and ethnic minority communities, like forced marriage and ‘honour crimes’.

"It is simply unacceptable that so many Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights do not have the support they need to help them escape to safety and rebuild their lives after violence and abuse.

“What is needed is a national funding strategy to stem the tide of closures and stabilise existing life-saving services. The Government should look to Scotland where ring-fenced funding at a national level has led to the expansion of Rape Crisis Centres in contrast to the rest of the UK where services have been haemorraging at an alarming rate

“We welcome the Committee's focus on the need for prevention which should include high profile public campaigns and work with young people in schools around issues like consent to sex and domestic violence.”

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