VAWG includes any form of violence and abuse which disproportionately affects women and girls and is a council-wide priority as we know the devastating consequences for individuals, their children, loved ones, and the wider community.
Councillor Jacqui Dyer, Lambeth’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Jobs, Skills and Community Safety, said: “All types of violence against women and girls too often remain hidden and under-reported. When women and girls feel unsafe it restricts their participation in all elements of life and prevents them from thriving.
“Since the last VAWG Strategy was published in 2016, five Lambeth women have lost their lives to male violence.
“More needs to be done and we dedicate this strategy, which signals the way forward, to those who had their lives taken from them, as we commit to making Lambeth a safer borough for everyone.”
Publishing the strategy initiates the creation of a VAWG strategic partnership board in Lambeth that will be responsible for turning the strategy’s priorities into an action plan which will be launched on November 25, 2021, which is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, published alongside the strategy and reviewed annually.
This is the council’s third VAWG Strategy and builds on a decade of work to establish effective services, partnerships and processes that support victims and survivors and their children, and hold perpetrators to account.
The development of this strategy has been led by our key stakeholders: those with lived experience of VAWG, residents, and the practitioners working with victims and survivors and their children. Lambeth co-produced an extensive consultation with experts by experience and this included surveys, focus groups and public events to ensure residents’ views were central to the production of the strategy.
Five key strategic priorities were identified by our stakeholders:
· Specialist support – which meets the needs of our diverse communities
· Working together – strengthening partnerships between key agencies
· Community response – utilising the expertise and assets of our communities
· Children and young people – prioritising education and early intervention
· Reducing harm from perpetrators – identifying and responding to the source of the problem
Intersectionality and anti-racism are principles embedded through each of these priorities as we know our residents’ experience of VAWG and accessing support are impacted by the barriers caused by structural inequalities and discrimination.
Cllr Dyer said: “Making Lambeth safer is our priority. We are ambitious – our vision is that Lambeth is a borough where everyone is safe. Too many women and girls are unsafe in public and in private. We are clear that tackling VAWG needs to be everybody’s business. This strategy provides the framework by which we will achieve this.”
Lambeth council funds the largest number of refuge centre beds in London with 52. There is also specialist community-based support for survivors of VAWG, a specific service for those affected by FGM/cutting and the council has commissioned sexual violence therapeutic support services, with a service to deter sexual assaults related to the night-time economy.
Lambeth Council has protected VAWG services in the borough from cuts, and invested extra money over the last decade despite significant reductions in its funding from Government.
How to access support services
If you are a Lambeth resident and are experiencing domestic abuse or any form of gender-based violence you can access free, non-judgmental practical and emotional support from the Gaia Centre on Tel: 020 7733 8724 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information on how to access a refuge, please contact the freephone National Domestic Abuse Helpline, open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on Tel: 0808 2000 247.
In an emergency, always call police on 999.
To read the full strategy visit: