Violence Against Women and Girls Debate

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Department: Home Office

Violence Against Women and Girls

Baroness Burt of Solihull Excerpts
Monday 4th December 2023

(5 months, 3 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Sharpe of Epsom Portrait Lord Sharpe of Epsom (Con)
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My Lords, this is an entirely separate subject, as noble Lords know. I accept the premise of the question, but I am going to come back to the noble Lord. There is another Question on this tomorrow where we can go into much more detail.

Baroness Burt of Solihull Portrait Baroness Burt of Solihull (LD)
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I want to say how powerful I thought the Minister’s reply a couple of questions ago was and commend the noble Baroness, Lady Chakrabarti, on pointing out the role that men can play in raising the issue of domestic violence against women and girls by calling it out. We know that the root cause of violence against women and girls all over the world is inequality, which is getting worse, with previous strides forward being reversed while our budget—particularly for overseas aid—is diminished. What thinking outside the box have the Government done to reduce inequalities and do more with less?

Lord Sharpe of Epsom Portrait Lord Sharpe of Epsom (Con)
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My Lords, it is about how you do things. I have already referred to a few of the things the Government have done, and a significant amount of money is being invested into this area to improve outcomes for victims. Since 2010, we have criminalised forced marriage; criminalised revenge porn; criminalised failing to protect a girl from FGM; introduced Clare’s law, which is a domestic violence disclosure scheme; introduced two new stalking offences; introduced the offence of controlling or coercive behaviour; introduced legislation that recognises as victims children who see, hear or experience the effects of domestic abuse and are related to the perpetrator or victim; and criminalised virginity testing and hymenoplasty. There is so much more that the Government have done; it is not all about money.