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Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (VAWDASV): Perpetrator Service Standards

The Welsh Government’s National Strategy and Delivery Framework sets out our plans for implementing the Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (Wales) 2015 Act. These include the importance of increasing the focus on holding perpetrators to account and providing opportunities to change their behaviour based on victim safety.

The requirement to ensure victims and survivors are central to the achievement of the six aims of the Strategy remains paramount. Nevertheless, the need to also work safely and effectively with perpetrators of Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence (VAWDASV) in Wales is clear. If we do not provide meaningful opportunities for perpetrators to positively engage with services to effectively address their abusive behaviours, then we risk the continuation of their abuse.

The Welsh Government is committed to working in partnership with stakeholders to further develop services for perpetrators of Violence Against Women, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence in Wales. We are taking this forward as part of our work on the ‘framework to support positive change in those at risk of offending in Wales’ 2018-2023. We have worked closely with partners to contribute to our understanding of ‘what works’ with perpetrators and develop a shared appreciation of the importance of evidence-based practice. We continue to engage with stakeholders to develop a clear picture of the risks and needs of VAWDASV perpetrators across Wales in order to inform the commissioning and delivery of services that reflect these risks and needs in a responsive way.

Consistently safe and effective services for all VAWDASV perpetrators in Wales across the ‘perpetrator journey’ is vital. Early intervention approaches to working with perpetrators contribute positively to protecting the public and minimising harm to potential victims. Repeat perpetrators, who have been convicted and are subject to statutory supervision and management, however, also require services. The Standards are intended to support all of this work whilst acknowledging the value of existing accreditation by specialist providers.

The expertise of those stakeholders who have worked with us has been invaluable in creating Standards to meet the needs of VAWDASV perpetrator commissioners and services across Wales. While the Standards will be of direct use to those commissioners and services, the ultimate aim is to inform the delivery of safe and effective perpetrator services, giving individuals the best opportunity to achieve meaningful and sustainable change. This in turn will support and protect victims and survivors, contributing to a society where everyone in Wales is able to live fear free.