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The true cost of domestic violence –  the business case for investing to save in these services   Cllr Ann Lucas Domestic Violence Champion Safer & Stronger Communities Board 29 June  2011 www.local.gov.uk
Latest cost of domestic violence  Source: The Cost of Domestic Violence: Up-date 2009, Sylvia Walby, University of Leeds £15.7 billion  Overall cost  £10 billion  Victim (human, emotional) £1.9 billion  Lost economic output £0.39 billion  Civil legal £0.2 billion  Housing £0.28 billion  Social Services  £1.7 billion  Health £1.3 billion Criminal Justice 2008  
Key issues for local authorities dealing with DV   Funding cuts are a massive challenge that councils have to manage locally £ 28m for Government’s Violence Against Women Strategy (VAWG) Need to do business differently to maintain, improve services Pool local budgets, identify key services required, work together and prevent Best access, best services, best outcomes as early as possible Possibilities – prevention, tailored services, eliminate duplication, savings  Police & Crime Commissioners (PCCs) expected to take over DV services
Benefits and outcomes of investing in DV services  Less human and emotional cost – happier, more stable families and children Healthier people – less mental and physical injuries  Enhanced economic output – less time off work, better performance Lower cost prevention – less intensive, expensive and drastic solutions Applies to criminal justice, health, social services, housing and legal services More resources to use elsewhere Elected members have an important role
Examples of Benefits & Savings  Sunderland – hostel and outreach service for male perpetrators of domestic violence (HEAD) -  annual running cost of £265,500 , which is covered if it prevents a minimum of 280 DV incidents each year, no DV murders since 2002 but  each murder is estimated to cost at least £1 million Liverpool – since two DV Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARACs): 6 fewer murders than when the first Marac was held in 2006 267 fewer cases involving homelessness 83% of individuals with no repeat offending Total savings: £21,300,000 CAADA –  “Invest £1 in the MARAC model to get £6 back” Lancashire -  independent DV advocates/advisers  can reduce the number of unsuccessful criminal justice outcomes - providing earlier and more effective responses can  save highly expensive, lengthy processes .
Looking ahead – will not get easier… PCCs - from May 2012 Community safety, VAWG and DV funding/responsibilities going to PCCs Funding transfers from April 2013 or sooner Local resource review – localisation of business rates Public/open services reform – payment by results, open markets Modernising commissioning – creating a level playing field The Local Government Group’s Safer & Stronger Communities Board will raise awareness and profile of DV and VAWG locally, e.g.: Local Government First magazine – circulation 20,000  Community safety conference workshops Proactive press and media work Engage with the Home Office, including VAWG Inter-Ministerial Group Business case for prevention promoted to councils – like today Best practice via Community Safety Bulletins and Communities of Practice  www.local.gov.uk

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Wednesday 29 June, breakfast session - domestic violence - Cllr Lucas

  • 1. The true cost of domestic violence – the business case for investing to save in these services Cllr Ann Lucas Domestic Violence Champion Safer & Stronger Communities Board 29 June 2011 www.local.gov.uk
  • 2. Latest cost of domestic violence Source: The Cost of Domestic Violence: Up-date 2009, Sylvia Walby, University of Leeds £15.7 billion Overall cost £10 billion Victim (human, emotional) £1.9 billion Lost economic output £0.39 billion Civil legal £0.2 billion Housing £0.28 billion Social Services £1.7 billion Health £1.3 billion Criminal Justice 2008  
  • 3. Key issues for local authorities dealing with DV Funding cuts are a massive challenge that councils have to manage locally £ 28m for Government’s Violence Against Women Strategy (VAWG) Need to do business differently to maintain, improve services Pool local budgets, identify key services required, work together and prevent Best access, best services, best outcomes as early as possible Possibilities – prevention, tailored services, eliminate duplication, savings Police & Crime Commissioners (PCCs) expected to take over DV services
  • 4. Benefits and outcomes of investing in DV services Less human and emotional cost – happier, more stable families and children Healthier people – less mental and physical injuries Enhanced economic output – less time off work, better performance Lower cost prevention – less intensive, expensive and drastic solutions Applies to criminal justice, health, social services, housing and legal services More resources to use elsewhere Elected members have an important role
  • 5. Examples of Benefits & Savings Sunderland – hostel and outreach service for male perpetrators of domestic violence (HEAD) - annual running cost of £265,500 , which is covered if it prevents a minimum of 280 DV incidents each year, no DV murders since 2002 but each murder is estimated to cost at least £1 million Liverpool – since two DV Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARACs): 6 fewer murders than when the first Marac was held in 2006 267 fewer cases involving homelessness 83% of individuals with no repeat offending Total savings: £21,300,000 CAADA – “Invest £1 in the MARAC model to get £6 back” Lancashire - independent DV advocates/advisers can reduce the number of unsuccessful criminal justice outcomes - providing earlier and more effective responses can save highly expensive, lengthy processes .
  • 6. Looking ahead – will not get easier… PCCs - from May 2012 Community safety, VAWG and DV funding/responsibilities going to PCCs Funding transfers from April 2013 or sooner Local resource review – localisation of business rates Public/open services reform – payment by results, open markets Modernising commissioning – creating a level playing field The Local Government Group’s Safer & Stronger Communities Board will raise awareness and profile of DV and VAWG locally, e.g.: Local Government First magazine – circulation 20,000 Community safety conference workshops Proactive press and media work Engage with the Home Office, including VAWG Inter-Ministerial Group Business case for prevention promoted to councils – like today Best practice via Community Safety Bulletins and Communities of Practice www.local.gov.uk

Editor's Notes

  1. I have been involved as champion for domestic violence and related issues and have been committed to tackling these for many years. At a national level I have an active lobbying role. We have for example worked with the Home Office on the Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy, as councils have a key role to play in prevention, in providing support and helping women to rebuild their lives. And I have been working with local government colleagues in other European countries to support the call for a European strategy on violence against women. I am very happy to be accessible and to talk to people and to speak at events to raise awareness – I know that more needs to be done, especially with young people, to change attitudes and focus on preventing domestic violence and violence against women and girls.
  2. This slide shows that DV costs – it’s hugely expensive. These rounded up figures refer to research led by Sylvia Walby from the University of Leeds in 2004 and updated in 2009 to estimate the cost of DV – which includes significant costs of public services. Lost economic output is only measured here in terms of time off work due to injuries – it does not factor in for example the detrimental effect of DV on work performance, which would reduce economic output more. Human and emotional costs are subject to debate but are based on the notion that people would pay something in order not to suffer the human and emotional costs of being injured. The report highlighted increased use by victims of DV of better developed public services - including higher rates of reporting, which is a key issue - leading to reduction of lost economic output and human and emotional costs – the estimates factor in that not all victims use services. More reason to develop DV services yet further to help eradicate DV as much as possible. Increased use of services is not entirely surprising given major policy developments encouraging victims of DV to seek help and to develop service quality, e.g. more enquiries into the causes of injury, new Sexual Assault Referral Centres, development of injunctions. These are just DV costs but to give you a flavour , a further report by New Philanthropy Capital (NPC) in 2008 highlighted additional costs associated with various types of violence against women in England and Wales in 2006/07: DV - £20 billion, Sexual violence - £26 billion, Prostitution - £2 billion, Violence against BME women - £1.6 billion, Trafficking - £1 billion - Overall cost of £40.1 billion including overlaps between violence types - and of course does not include further costs associated with violence against men. Referring to NPC’s work, the Government’s VAWG Strategic Vision puts an indicative, estimate figure for the minimum and overlapping cost of VAWG in the UK at £36.7bn annually and that doesn’t take into account the long-term emotional and mental health problems experienced by victims or that much DV is unreported and undetected.
  3. Financial cuts for councils and community safety partnerships are massive AND there are the previously mentioned rises in the costs of DV services – no council wants to cut services but sustaining existing levels of provision is a decision that each individual council needs to make locally – so what are the solutions? £ 28m for Government’s Violence Against Women Strategy (VAWG) including £20m for independent DV and sexual violence advisers and MARAC co-ordinators - less than previous years but welcome Pooling budgets and identifying existing and required services, working together and prevention locally are crucial to make the most of limited DV resources. Tackling DV together at the earliest stages through the widest access to these services can prevent individual situations worsening and prevents the need for more expensive, resource intensive solutions that could have been avoided. Organisations working together can also identify any trends or patterns in localities from the collective details of individual cases and further deploy resources more effectively to prevent DV in the first place or at least prevent individual situations from getting worse than they otherwise could. Councils have already been working extremely hard with other organisations such as the police, health service and voluntary organisations to ensure that those suffering have access to the help they need, when they need it. When Police & Crime Commissioners are elected, they are expected to take over responsibility for the provision of DV services. Councils need urgent clarity from central government on how it sees experienced community safety partnerships working with elected Commissioners to ensure that victims of this hideous crime continue to be offered expert advice and assistance.
  4. Costs are clearly one thing but what are the benefits of investing in such services? This list is not exhaustive but highlights just some of the benefits of investing in these services: As Sylvia Walby’s work at the University of Leeds showed, more victims of DV are using better developed public services leading to the reduction of: the extent of lost economic output – of benefit to individuals, employers and ultimately the national economy and human and emotional costs to individuals, children, whole families, groups of friends and communities More reason to develop DV services yet further to help eradicate DV as much as possible. But then these other reasons as well And elected members have a key role in addressing DV, e.g. : Sounding out communities, local groups and constituents about their views and experience of DV Highlighting DV issues and promoting what councils and partners are doing to address them Scrutinising, challenging and championing DV services locally to ensure they are as effective as possible for the needs of local communities
  5. Here’s just a few examples where investing to save in DV services not only leads to improved services and better outcomes but substantial savings as well. This isn’t always easy to quantify but where it isn’t, there is a clear belief that investing to save makes sense given the outcomes. (Extra details on each in case needed: Sunderland City Council supports local charity Wearside Women In Need (WWIN)  to deliver an outreach service for male perpetrators of domestic violence (HEAD) with an annual running cost of £265,500. These costs are covered if it prevents a minimum of 280 domestic violence incidents each year. There have been no DV murders since 2002 but each murder is estimated to cost at least £1 million, so benefits of investing in preventative services can be firmly evidenced. Liverpool City Council held two domestic violence multi-agency risk assessment conferences (Marac), did cost £80,000 (ABG) per annum to run – benefits: 6 fewer murders than when the first Marac was held in 2006; 267 fewer cases involving homelessness and 83% of individuals with no repeat offending. Savings at present are £21,300,000. From Lancashire’s DV Strategy – “As can be seen from the information above, what we are really costing is the lack of action to tackle domestic violence adequately. A great deal of the money spent as detailed above could be more efficiently used and to greater effect. For example, the evaluation of the Specialist Domestic Violence Courts (Cook et al 2004) shows that independent domestic violence advocates or advisers can reduce the number of unsuccessful criminal justice outcomes. Any intervention that can provide an earlier and more effective response can save highly expensive, lengthy processes.” CAADA - Co-ordinated Action Against Domestic Abuse – “MARAC-ed clients get a package of support from agencies which result in life changes which break the cycle of violence and victimisation. - Drug Service Manager, Blackpool” (Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences)
  6. It is clear that looking ahead, there are no easy solutions. The proposal to give new directly elected Police and Crime Commissioners responsibility for allocating funding for community safety, including tackling domestic violence, will take councils out of the picture. As domestic violence is not a visible crime in communities it may not be seen as a priority for Commissioners and it is not yet clear what their relationship will be with community safety partnerships. It is vital that councils are plugged into their work. Also coming down the track is the Government’s Local Resource Review which will be looking at explore a radical new approach to financing councils that reduces the current dependency on central redistribution for as many authorities as possible. The review will also look at the scope of community budgets. We are expecting the Government to publish a public services reform White paper that is likely to promote the idea of payment by results for public services. The fact that organisations do “good work” won’t be enough if the emphasis is on payment for success. There are also plans to modernise the commissioning process to cut some of the red tape and focus on outcomes. So there is more change to come – and we all need to change the way we work so that we are able to continue to help women victims of violence and other vulnerable people in local communities. This meeting was an action from the Inter-Ministerial Group. I understand that it was suggested that we should also arrange our own meeting but we think that there are other, better ways of engaging with our member councils and we will be undertaking a range of activity: Local Government First magazine Conference workshops Press and media work Promoting the business case for preventing violence to councils Promoting best practice through our bulletins and online communities. But there is also a call to YOU, as elected members and officers, to raise awareness of these issues, services and solutions locally so that together we can tackle DV. Thank you for listening.