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Domestic abuse

The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 defines domestic abuse as the behaviour of a person towards another person, inside or outside the home, if they are both over 16 years old, are personally connected, and the behaviour involves:

  • physical, sexual, economic, psychological, emotional, or other abuse
  • violent or threatening behaviour
  • controlling or coercive behaviour

This includes all relationships e.g. intimate partners, ex-partners, family members, teenage relationships & child/adolescent to parent violence, regardless of sexual identity, age, ethnicity, socio-economic status, sexuality, or background.

Children & young people are victims if they see, hear, or experience the effects of domestic abuse & can experience serious, long lasting emotional and psychological impacts. Some blame themselves for the abuse and/or leave the family home.

Young people can experience domestic abuse within their own intimate relationships. Peer abuse or ‘teenage relationship abuse’ is not recognised as
‘domestic abuse’ if one or both parties are under 16.

Home and intimate relationships should help people to feel safe but that may be compromised if children, young people and their parents are living with emotional pressures such as the threat of forced marriage, honour-based violence, and domestic or intimate partner abuse.

The impact of these experiences for children and young people should always be considered and referrals made to Children’s Social Care via the Sheffield Safeguarding Hub, tel. 0114 2734855 if there are concerns. Similarly you should consider the vulnerability of the adults involved and consider a referral to Adult Safeguarding, tel. 0114 2736870.

It is important to remember that young people can experience domestic abuse in their own intimate partner relationships and since 2013 the definition of domestic abuse includes 16 & 17 year olds, for both victims and young people causing harm. Whilst identifying domestic abuse can be difficult in any circumstance, we know this is particularly so in young people’s relationships where it is hidden or normalised by young people themselves. 

Below are Sheffield Children Safeguarding Partnership (SCSP) resources and training to help you and your workforce understand the issues involved, know when to ask for support and to get help when it is needed.

SCSP Strategies:

    SCSP policy & protocols:

    Assessment guidance:

    Sheffield Training:

    Domestic abuse training in Sheffield is available from the Independent Domestic Abuse Service (IDAS). For further details please visit:

    Other relevant information can be found on this website here: Information and resources or in the index on the left side of this page.

    If you are concerned about a child or young person, follow this link: Referring a safeguarding concern to Children’s Social Care

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