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DA-related suicide ‘on the increase’

The latest Domestic Homicide Project report shows more domestic abuse victims are taking their own lives with 93 suspected cases in the year to March 2023 compared with 51 in the 12 months to March 2021 when data was first collected.

However, the study’s authors add the qualification that the increase is likely to be because of better awareness and identification by police forces rather than a rise in the such deaths, though an observable increase in domestic abuse-relate suicides cannot be ruled out.

Among the report’s recommendations are police forces should build awareness with partner organisations of the links between domestic abuse and suicide.

The Home Office-funded research project is led by the National Police Chiefs’ Council, whose domestic abuse lead assistant commissioner Louisa Rolfe said: “I am encouraged that forces are strengthening their approach to suspected victim suicides following domestic abuse. Perpetrators should always be held to account for their abhorrent actions, and this should be no different when a victim has sadly taken their own life.”

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