The British Government have announced they are creating a new offence for "coercive and controlling behaviour" within relationships, with the maximum penalty being a five year prison sentence. Some omen's charities have praised this but others have said there are already enough laws, the problem is they are not being implemented properly.
Is creating a new offence the best way to tackle domestic violence?
I tend to agree with those who don't think this is a good move. There are a lot of laws already in place, I'm not sure one more will make any positive difference. It could just become one more law about domestic violence to be ignored or improperly implemented.
Also, I'm not convinced that victims of partners who display coercive and controlling behaviour will be any more likely to come forward and report this behaviour to the police, just because there is a new law.
The best that can be said for this is that it is raising the issue of domestic violence and getting it discussed. I'm not sure it will help prevent it though.
Im in two minds. 'Coercive and controlling behaviour' should definitely be reprimanded, but creating a new law about it won't achieve anything. The aws we currently have just need to be enforced better.