Council's £3.7m pledge to support abuse victims gets green light

Domestic abuse victim in danger

Almost £3.7 million has been pledged by Cambridgeshire County Council to help victims of domestic abuse in the county. - Credit: Karolina Grabowska/Pexels

Almost £3.7 million has been pledged to help victims of domestic abuse in Cambridgeshire. 

Cambridgeshire County Council has agreed to award a six-year contract worth £2.49m to provide refuge accommodation in the county.  

Members of the council’s communities, social mobility and inclusion committee also approved a two-year contract for a domestic abuse outreach service, worth around £700,000. 

As well as this, around £500,000 has been approved for the procurement of dispersed safe accommodation, primarily for residents who are being abused. 

Cllr Tom Sanderson, committee chair, believes the financial support will be used for years to come. 

He said: “A huge amount of support is available for people who are experiencing domestic abuse and the decision made by the committee will ensure this support can continue in future years.” 

Over £2.49m would be used to provide refuge accommodation, which will continue to be available for those fleeing from and within the county if deemed to be safe. 

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There are currently three refuges in Cambridgeshire, which provide space for 32 women and 55 children.   

An outreach service aims to ensure victims and survivors of domestic abuse can access direct support, regardless of the level of risk. 

This is to enable people to remain safe in their own home or to find alternative accommodation. 

Another option is dispersed safe accommodation for different groups of people, including victims of teenage children, those with complex needs or with no recourse for public funds. 

Independent domestic violence advisors will offer support for those to move back to their own homes, or alternative accommodation with safety measures being in place. 

These include extra security, occupation orders and non-molestation orders. 

“Unfortunately, domestic abuse has become more prevalent in our communities since the pandemic,” Cllr Sanderson added.  

“It is vital that we continue to work with our partners to provide services which keep people safe.  

“If you need help, please visit: https://www.cambsdasv.org.uk/website which has information and routes to get support.” 

The extra funding comes after the county council was awarded over £1.1m by the government last month to support victims of domestic abuse in 2022-23.   

The money will be spent primarily on the aforementioned projects and to meet duties set out in the Domestic Abuse Act 2021.