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A near £2 million project designed to challenge and change the behaviour of perpetrators of domestic abuse will be launched by West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster.

The PCC has been successful in securing funding from the Domestic Abuse Perpetrators Fund for a two-year innovative pilot which will be rolled out in custody in both Coventry and Sandwell as part of his work to promote the rights and welfare of victims and to change behaviours.

The work is another step towards preventing, tackling and reducing domestic abuse in the region.

Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Foster said: “I am delighted to have secured this funding which will help to prevent, tackle and reduce abusive behaviour in the future.

“I will always promote the rights and welfare of victims. If an intervention like this can challenge and change an abuser’s behaviour and prevent them from inflicting abuse on other people in the future, then it’s always going to have my backing.

“Abusers must also understand though, that they will be dealt with swiftly and robustly by the police, if they don’t cease their abusive behaviour.”

The PCC launched the domestic abuse in-custody intervention project in Oldbury this week, covering Sandwell cases, with an additional 12-week community intervention for perpetrators upon release.

This intervention will be followed with a referral pathway into an accredited 26-week behaviour change programme called Choose to Change, delivered in Sandwell by Relate Birmingham.

Choose to Change is already being successfully delivered by Relate Coventry, funded through the Local Authority, so part of this project is to uplift the provision in the city, so that there is equity across both Coventry and Sandwell sites for C2C, which will enable a more effective evaluation process.

The Coventry uplift will include delivering training to professionals and engagement with community groups, in order to ensure pathways into the provision are understood and maximised. Coventry Relate will also provide an oversight function to Relate Birmingham, to ensure the service in Sandwell can be embedded effectively. 

As well as the C2C project, the model will also allow referrals into a range of domestic abuse related out of court disposals, including those tackling alcohol abuse, stalking and New Chance for female offenders.

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