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Innovative approach to domestic abuse sees reduction in offending

police officer patrol

A multi-agency approach to dealing with domestic abuse perpetrators in Cleveland has seen a welcome reduction in offending.

MATAC (Multi-agency Tasking and Coordination) sees 23 agencies come together to share information and take an in-depth look into the background and behaviour of domestic abusers.

Often, when agencies get to the root cause of offending, they find that individuals have witnesses abuse through their own childhood or have unaddressed mental health issues. MATAC works to address these issues in the hope that the perpetrator can understand the devastating impact of their behaviour and stop the abuse.

The project has just passed its first year and of the 43 people that started, 22 have been discharged after a significant reduction in their offending and have not committed any further abuse offences according to police records.

Perpetrators are selected based upon the frequency and seriousness of incidents and they are told that they have been identified as a serial offender. They could be in a relationship with the victim or could be a family member abusing a relative.

MATAC was introduced by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner through the Whole Systems Approach work, supported by funding from the Home Office.

Cleveland Police Detective Inspector Jen Milsom, who manages MATAC, said: “This is an innovative project which gets to the heart of why domestic abusers commit crime. Improving the lives of victims is the key aim of MATAC, and if we can change the behaviour of offenders, we can keep victims and their children safe.

“This first year was like a proof of concept, and we’re hoping to expand and potentially double the cases that we work on. All agencies on board have a shared aim of preventing domestic abuse from happening.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger said: “MATAC forms part of other work we are doing to safeguard victims of domestic abuse, and I’m pleased that it has stopped offending in over half of cases. We owe it to victims to do all we can to improve their lives and ensure that they no longer suffer at the hands of these perpetrators.”

If you believe your behaviour is affecting your relationship then you can speak to Respect http://respectphoneline.org.uk/ for webchat or 0808024040 or locally, speak to Route2 info@route2.org.uk or call 01642 241873 or call Harbour 0845 602 7440 or 01429 268600.


Posted on Wednesday 14th August 2019
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