About Domestic Violence

Roshni’s practices come from an inclusive definition of Domestic Violence. For Roshni Domestic Violence comes in all forms ranging from mental to physical and financial to emotional. Forced marriage, sexual exploitation, honour based violence; rape and mental abuse are just some of the issues facing South Asian women.
Here are some of the common signs of Domestic Violence:
Verbal abuse: shouting, taunting, mocking, name calling, verbally threatening.
Isolation: not being allowed to go out, forbidden to work, apply for benefits, restricting your movements and freedom, monitoring or blocking your telephone calls, preventing you from seeing friends and relatives.
Harassment: constantly following you, checking up on you, opening your mail, texts and emails, repeatedly checking to see who has telephoned you.
Sexual violence: using force, threats or intimidation to make you perform sexual acts, having sex with you when you don’t want to have sex.
Physical violence: punching, slapping, hitting, biting, pinching, kicking, pulling hair out, pushing, shoving, burning, strangling.
Is it a crime?
Despite there being no single criminal offence for Domestic Violence, there are many forms of domestic violence which are crimes, for example, sexual/physical assault, harassment, criminal damage, attempted murder, rape and false imprisonment.

Facts On Domestic Violence

General

  • 2 women are killed each week by a current or former partner (Homicide Statistics, 1998) – 1 woman killed every 3 days.
  • An analysis of 10 separate domestic violence prevalence studies by the Council of Europe showed consistent findings: 1 in 4 women experience domestic violence over their lifetimes and between 6-10% of women suffer domestic violence in a given year. (Council of Europe, 2002)
  • On average, a woman is assaulted 35 times before her first call to the police. (Jaffe 1982)

30% of domestic violence either starts or will intensify during pregnancy (Department of Health report October 2004)

Children

  • In 90% of domestic violence incidents in family households, children were in the same or the next room. (Hughes, 1992)
  • In over 50% of known domestic violence cases, children were also directly abused – NSPCC (1997) found a 55% overlap; Farmer & Owen (1995) found 52% overlap.
NSPCC/Child line Number: 0800 1111

Information on No Recourse

Since April 1 2012, the UK policy on no recourse has undergone major changes.  In the past many women have come to the UK, often legally, in the hope of improving their lives. They come on temporary work permits, student visas or spousal visas. In many cases south Asian women are forced to marry abroad and are then brought to the UK on false promises and expectations and when they experience Domestic Violence , they are often without public funds, therefore are unable to seek help or legal advice. The rule ‘’no recourse to public funds’ means a woman in this position – even if she’s married to a British citizen – is not entitled to  state benefits, including housing benefit and income support.

As a result women who are in to an unwanted relationship or forced marriage are trapped and can not leave even if they wish to. Furthermore refuges are unable to provide support or accept referrals for women on no recourse to public refunds as they cannot afford to lose out on rental income and do not have the funds to provide for living costs.
However changes in the UK policy for victims of domestic violence now grants permission provided they meet the relevant eligibility criteria to support women and men who entered the UK or were given leave to remain in the UK as aspouse, civil partner, unmarried or same sex partner of a British citizen, or someone present and settled in the UK, by providing them with means to access public funds if they meet the eligibility criteria whilst they make a claim to stay permanently in the UK under the Domestic Violence Immigration Rule.

IMPORTANT NOTICE:- Please note we strongly recommend that all individuals who have immigration concerns seek advice from a impartial regulated accredited immigration advisor. The above information is for general background information.

If you think you are a victim of domestic violence you should immediately seek help;
  • For immediate assistance contact 999 and speak to the police
You can call women’s aid where this is a 24hr helpline 0808 2000 247
  • You may want to go to a friends/neighbour for immediate assistance
Useful things to remember to take with you are:
  • Passport, visa and related documents
  • NI number
  • Benefit books, bankbooks and other forms
  • Clothes for yourself and the children’s identification
  • Toiletries
  • Useful telephone numbers
  • Photographs
  • Money
  • Yours and your children’s birth certificate and medical cards
Remember if in urgent need of assistance CALL 999.

Useful Numbers:
Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247