Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Labour Abuses Platform Against Domestic Abuse

Pressure is growing on Reading West MP Martin Salter to back up his pledge to sign the Early Day Motion 653 which calls on local and central government to undertake action on domestic abuse issues.

Mr Salter recently went on the offensive against Amnesty International as he tried to defend the adequacy of Reading's Labour-dominated council and services which he described as "the envy of other local authorities".

He publicly smeared AI with the suggestion that they "failed to do their... homework [properly]" while stating he is "more than happy" to support the parliamentary motion.

Matt Blackall responded by rubbishing the accusation Mr Salter made in print and provides the backlinks as evidence.

The local branch of Amnesty is concerned about the lack of specialist services in Reading, all of which are now run by one organisation. The organisation supports EDM 653 as part of concerted efforts by a coalition of campaigners to raise awareness of domestic abuse issues, which were first announced to coincide with International Women's Day on 8th March.

REP reports 142 people died in domestic attacks in 2007, including 38 men.

Meanwhile Reading East Labour parliamentary candidate Anneliese Dodds offered her support for a national database for offenders, as she explained that as many as one in four of all women may be victims of domestic abuse. She also praised the comprehensive nature of local services.

Refuge Chief Executive Sandra Horley 'sharply criticised' the planned consultation as 'gimmickery and spin', explaining that Government action in the area has been 'piecemeal' and that Labour's proposals wouldn't address the causes of the problem anyway.

She said: "Police can't be expected to monitor relationships and love lives of offenders," adding, "the Government is hoping to get away with useless initiatives like this register and it is hypocritical to sound tough and do little."

Janet Allbeson from single-parent charity Gingerbread explained further that Labour's Welfare Reform Bill is confused and increases the risk for the most vulnerable.

None of Berkshire's 4 Conservative and 2 Labour MPs have yet signed EDM 653.

Oranjepan says:
If you are a victim of domestic abuse please get in contact with BWA - but it's women only!

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