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Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence and Multiple Disadvantage

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AVA and Agenda have launched a new national commission focusing on domestic and sexual abuse against the most marginalised women and girls.

Launched in October 2017, the commission is considering the situation of women and girls who have experienced violence and go on to face a range of other issues including addiction and poor mental health. It will take evidence from women with experience of these issues, and will consider what services are available to women and the changes to policy and practice needed to support them.

At the end of the year-long commission, a report will be published with the findings and a series of recommendations including for the government and local authorities.

Chaired by Baroness Hilary Armstrong, it brings together leading experts from a range of sectors including:

  • Dame Gill Morgan, former Permanent Secretary to the Welsh Assembly Government
  • Vivienne Adams, Chief Executive of Adfam
  • Professor Suzanne Fitzpatrick, Director of the Institute for Social Policy, Housing, Equalities Research at Heriot Watt University
  • Marai Larasi, Executive Director of Imkaan
  • Jaswant Narwal, Chief Crown Prosecutor for the South East of England
  • Dominic Williamson, Executive Director of Strategy and Policy at St Mungo’s.

The commission has been kindly funded by a grant from the Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales.

The commission has just closed its call for written evidence from organisations who support women facing domestic and/or sexual violence and multiple disadvantage. 

The Commission will be taking oral evidence over Spring and Summer with the aim of publishing recommendations in the autumn of 2018. Please get in touch if you have questions or would like to submit evidence on commission@avaproject.org.uk 

Community of Practice

This week the Commission’s community of practice on women’s multiple disadvantage went live. Through the community, thirty-five professionals with a wealth of experience and expertise on a range of issues including violence against women and girls, substance use, mental distress, involvement in prostitution will come together to share best practice about supporting women affected by abuse and multiple disadvantage and feed into the Commission’s final report.

Peer Researchers

As part of the work of the National Commission, we have trained 13 women with lived experience of multiple disadvantage to be peer researchers. These inspiring women are now conducting interviews with other women in their communities to ensure that the voices of women with experience shape the commission recommendations.

For more information on Peer Researchers, or any other aspect of the project, please contact commission@avaproject.org.uk