Three East and South London boroughs are amongst 46 boroughs across England to receive extra funds for programmes targeting victims of domestic violence and abuse. Hackney, Tower Hamlets and Lewisham have been granted a total of £174,378 of funding from the £3.5 million countrywide scheme.
With £100,000, Hackney got the lion’s share of the funds, followed by Tower Hamlets with £64,378 and finally Lewisham receiving £10,000.
The scheme, supported by the Department for Communities and Local Government, aims to end what has been called the “staggered and disconnected approach” currently used by councils and charities. Local authorities are being encouraged to come up with innovative services to tackle domestic violence.
John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, said: “We are pleased to be awarded this funding which will allow us to develop a pilot project to provide emergency accommodation for those residents who most need it. We will use this funding for victims of abuse who find themselves in extremely vulnerable situations through no fault of their own.”
The new approach should see better partnerships between the Councils and local specialist charities. Hackney Council will join forces with the London Violence Against Women and Girls Consortium to handle cases of domestic abuse victims, while Lewisham Council will focus more on refugees.
In Tower Hamlets, three associations and charities will be working with the Council to tackle domestic violence in the borough. Violence Against Women and Girls, Rights of Women and Against Violence and Abuse will work with the council to provide help to people who are subject to different types of threats, violence or abuse, including physical, sexual, financial or psychological.
Accommodation and legal support will be offered to the vulnerable victims in the borough.
Priority will be given to disadvantaged victims, especially sex workers and women experiencing homelessness, drugs and alcohol needs, followed by those with no recourse to public funds and limited financial resources.