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Select Committee opens inquiry into VAWG with evidence from Domestic Abuse Commissioner, Refuge and Centre for Women’s Justice

The Commons Home Affairs Committee has held the opening session of its inquiry into violence against women and girls with a session taking evidence from experts working to inform Government at all levels, and domestic abuse charities.

The United Nations defines violence against women as "any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life". While it has recently featured prominently in the media, the Committee says that this is an issue that can be pervasive and hidden.

The most recent Crime Survey for England and Wales showed that an estimated 1.6m women experienced domestic abuse in the last year. The Crime Survey also estimated that there were around 977,000 women who were victims of stalking in the last year.

According to a 2018 survey by Plan International UK, two-thirds of girls and young women aged 14 to 21 in the UK have experienced unwanted sexual attention or unwanted sexual or physical contact in a public place
In this opening session of the inquiry, the Home Affairs Committee sought to gain an overview of the current picture in relation to violence against women and girls, as well as the impact of current measures to address it. The Committee also investigated which forms of VAWG and which groups of women and girls affected by VAWG may be overlooked.

Evidence was given to the Committee by:

To watch the session, click here. For more details of the Committee's inquiry into violence against women and girls, click here.