Chair of the Board at Refuge, Hetti Barkworth-Nanton, on tackling domestic abuse. 1 in 4 women in England and Wales will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime


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A wide-ranging conversation on the topic of domestic abuse. Hetti sheds light on sobering statistics, attitudes and behaviours and describes the challenges presented by COVID lockdowns and how new technologies are impacting the field.

In England and Wales, around 2 women a week are killed by a current or former partner, and 1 in 4 women will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime.

The problem goes beyond domestic violence. As Hetti points out, coercive control is the dark side of domestic abuse and often leads to the worst outcomes.

Refuge is an organisation helping those who experience domestic abuse. They run the National Domestic Abuse Helpline and also have deployed a Tech Abuse Team, who support women who are experiencing online abuse and other tech-related abuse.

Innovations in technology present serious challenges – innovations leading to the miniaturisation of surveillance technology, for instance, or software that can compromise WiFi connectivity and remotely lock doors and override temperature control and other features in one’s own home.

This episode explores domestic abuse from various angles and provides invaluable information on the state of affairs and opportunities for improvement.

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