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Police: Training

Question for Home Office

UIN 135659, tabled on 7 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many police officers, who work with black women and girls affected by domestic abuse, have received specialist cultural training.

This answer is the replacement for a previous holding answer.

Answered on

15 March 2022

We do not hold this information centrally.

This Government is committed to ensuring that all victims and survivors of domestic abuse get the support they need, including those from Black backgrounds. We know that domestic abuse affects a wide and disparate group and that a “one size fits all” approach is not appropriate to support all victims, especially those with specific needs and vulnerabilities, including ethnic minority victims.

The College of Policing’s foundation training for those entering the service includes substantial coverage of police ethics and self-understanding, including the effects of personal conscious and unconscious bias. Further training is provided in specialist areas throughout an officer’s career. For example, training for those involved in public protection includes methods to raise officers’ self-awareness of their own views, stereotypes and biases.

In addition, the College of Policing’s Authorised Professional Practice on domestic abuse sets out that victims may have specific needs or issues relating to their cultural background or immigration status which should be considered when understanding risk and vulnerability of the victim. The Government continues to encourage forces to take up the College of Policing’s Domestic Abuse Matters training, which includes specific training on understanding victims, including on ‘honour’-based abuse which disproportionately affects members of ethnic minority communities.

The new full-time National Policing Lead for Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG), DCC Maggie Blyth, has included building trust and confidence as a key pillar of the Policing VAWG National Framework for delivery. This includes working with charities supporting black and minoritized women and girls to avoid their specific needs being overlooked.

The Home Office provides funding to a number of organisations that support ethnic minority victims. The Home Office provided £150,000 to the Karma Nirvana helpline in 2020/21, and an additional £85,682 was provided to boost their services during the Covid pandemic. Additionally, the charity Southall Black Sisters was provided with £80,951 of funding during the Covid pandemic and £1.5m in 2020/21 for the pilot Support for Migrant Victims Scheme. In 2021/22 the Ministry of Justice has also provided £2 million for specialist ‘by and for’ victim support organisations who support ethnic minority, LGBTQ+ and disabled victims.

Furthermore, as committed in the cross-Government Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Strategy published on 21 July last year, the Home Office has provided an additional £1.5 million funding this year for ‘by and for’ service provision and to further increase funding for valuable specialist services for victims of violence against women and girls.

Answered by

Home Office