2 women are killed every week in England and Wales by a current or former partner (Homicide Statistics, 1998) – 1 woman killed every 3 days.
1 in 4 women experience domestic violence over their lifetimes and between 6-10% of women suffer domestic violence in a given year.
Domestic violence has a higher rate of repeat victimisation than any other crime (Home Office, July 2002)
Every 60 seconds police in the UK receive a domestic assistance call – yet only 35% of domestic violence incidents are reported to the police (Stanko, 2000 & Home Office, 2002)
The 2001/02 British Crime Survey (BCS) found that there were an estimated 635,000 incidents of domestic violence in England and Wales. 81% of the victims were women and 19% were men. Domestic violence incidents also made up nearly 22% of all violent incidents reported by participants in the BCS (Home Office, July 2002)
On average, a woman is assaulted 35 times before her first call to the police (Jaffe, 1982)
In 90% of domestic violence incidents in family households, children were in the same or the next room (Hughes, 1992)
In over 50% of known domestic violence cases, children were also directly abused – NSPCC (1997) found a 55% overlap; Farmer & Owen (1995) found 52% overlap
30% of domestic violence either starts or will intensify during pregnancy (Department of Health report, October 2004)
Foetal morbidity from violence is more prevalent than gestational diabetes or pre-eclampsia (Friend, 1998)
Cost to society
In November 2009, Sylvia Walby of the University of Leeds estimated the total costs of domestic violence to be £15.7 billion a year. This is broken down as follows:
The costs to services (Criminal Justice System, health, social services, housing, civil legal) amount to £3.8 billion per year
The loss to the economy – where women take time off work due to injuries – is £1.9 billion per year
Domestic violence also leads to pain and suffering that is not counted in the cost of services
The National Domestic Violence 24 Hour Helpline 0808 2000 247