The Serious Crime Act 2015 has created two new offences of controlling or coercive behaviour with a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.
These new offences recognise the fact that domestic abuse can, and all too often does, involve much more than physical or sexual violence. In an article on the new law on the BBC website, it is pointed out that the new law is designed to criminalise those behaviours where "the normal power dynamics of a relationship end" and controlling or coercive behaviour takes over. The offence involves continuous or repeated behaviour and there is a defence that such behaviour was carried out in the component's best interests and was objectively reasonable.
Here at Zakon Training we have trainers who have dealt with domestic abuse incidents n a professional capacity and who have taught police officers and others how to recognise and deal with such incidents. We believe the new law is a welcome addition to the arsenal of the police and other agencies in the fight to try and ensure that people feel safe in their own homes and in relationships with those who are supposed to care for them.
Please feel free to get in touch if you want any information of how we can help you or your organisation to understand and apply this new law alongside existing measures for tackling domestic abuse.