Ending intimate partner violence

December 03, 2009

An Editorial in this week's Lancet looks at the UK Government's new strategy to end violence against women and girls--referring to the shocking statistics that, in England and Wales, around 4•8 million women have experienced at least one incident of domestic abuse since the age of 16 years. And about 10 000 women are sexually assaulted, and 2000 are raped, every week.

Traditionally, the UK has responded to violence against women after the abuse has occurred, through the criminal justice system and via health and support services. The new strategy goes further by also focusing on the prevention of violence against women and girls. The government will develop a national communications programme designed to address attitudes about violence against women and they will add gender equality and ending violence against women to the school curriculum. The Editorial says: "Educating children about these issues is a commendable part of the strategy because negative attitudes towards women and girls can be ingrained from an early age."

It concludes: "The UK Government's current strategy to end violence against women and girls should take into account the complexities of intimate partner violence. Communities must work to make such violent acts socially unacceptable and morally abhorrent."
-end-
Lancet Press Office. T) +44 (0) 20 7424 4949 E) pressoffice@lancet.com

For full Editorial, see: http://press.thelancet.com/editorials0512.pdf

Lancet

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