Local solutions from across London
Boroughs have faced many challenges in the last few years in dealing with Sexual and Domestic Violence including VAWG including a difficult financial climate and a challenging and changing social landscape.
Boroughs work with the voluntary sector to providing services that tackle a whole host of issues that arise when women and children are subject to Sexual & Domestic Violence, such as health, housing, welfare and benefits, children’s services and legal services as well as interactions with the Police, NHS, Councils and other public services. Some of the themes that are important in this area are
1. Partnership working: including joint commissioning and service provision with e.g. police, health and public health, schools and the voluntary sector, also including sub-regional partnerships.
2. Front line services – innovation or working differently to deliver services due to reduced funding or other reasons.
3. Harmful practices – specific interventions or services covering these issues.
4. Education and prevention – programmes aimed at specific groups or the wider public.
5. Implementing a VAWG-focused strategy – working with stakeholders and partners to deliver/implement a VAWG-responsive strategy across the council.
Below you’ll find examples of innovative borough practice across the spectrum of Sexual and Domestic Violence including VAWG policy and practice. More examples will be added as we receive them.
Lambeth was one of the first councils in the UK to develop and implement an integrated VAWG strategy and was the first to develop and deliver a service specifically addressing all forms of VAWG under one roof, the Gaia Centre.
Lewisham has residents who have undergone, or may be at risk of, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), but there was a lack of awareness, among both professionals and the public, of FGM - including definitions and where to go for support.
By moving from a prescriptive and uncoordinated approach to commissioning services across various departments to one based on outcomes, integration and collaboration, Southwark has transformed the provision of its domestic abuse services.
Schools have a crucial role to play in helping young people to develop respectful relationships, manage their emotions, and challenge the way in which some young men behave towards young women.