Police chief insists 'resources are a problem' in dealing with domestic abuse

Police chief says 'resources are a problem' in dealing with domestic abuse following Theresa May's comments

Home Secretary Theresa May speaking at the Annual Police Federation conference

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Police Chief Steve White has agreed with Home Secretary Theresa May's comments about the police's handling of domestic violence - but insists the problem is one of resources. 

Speaking at the Annual Police Federation (APF) conference in Bournemouth, May said progress had been made, but 'examples of a shameful attitude' still existed. She told the 1,200 delegates who attended 'victims of abuse are still being let down' and 'the right skills, training and commitment to protect the vulnerable are still not held by every single police officer'.

While he agreed with this assessment, White - the chairman of the APF - insisted 'resources were a huge part of this issue'. 

"She [Theresa May] is right in that the police service needs to give the very best level of service," he told Julia Hartley-Brewer. "But you can't deal with isolated incidents, you need to be able to follow it up.

"Many years ago, we had teams who could commit time to not just dealing with the initial incident, but also the underlying causes. Sadly, a lot of those units have had to be disbanded."

The Avon and Somerset Police inspector insisted the authorities worked to give victims confidence to report their situations. 

"The coercion, the element of control in domestic abuse cases can't be dealt with by a single incident," he explained. "This is why it's so important we have the experts in place to give victims the confidence to come forward.

"We have made progress, but we need to do more."