Action plan

On 8 March 2012 the government launched an updated action plan to tackle all aspects of violence against women and girls.

100 actions to tackle violence against women

Taking action - The new chapter updates the previous Call to end violence to women and girls action plan published March 2011. It contains 100 actions to tackle violence against women in the areas of prevention, provision of services, partnership working as well as justice outcomes and reducing the risk to victims.

The long-term commitment to combat and prevent this issue is fully justified. In the last year alone, there were over 1 million female victims of domestic abuse in England and Wales. Around 400,000 women are sexually assaulted and 80,000 women are raped each year. In the UK, more than one in four women will experience domestic abuse since the age of 16 years old, often with years of psychological abuse.

The new chapter is the latest update on this work, see all updates and reviews of the Call to end violence to women and girls action plan.

  • 'No level of violence against women and girls is acceptable in modern Britain or anywhere else in the world' Theresa May, Home Secretary.

Key Statistics

  • at least 1 in 4 women in the UK will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime (British Crime Survey (BCS) 2010/11)
  • domestic violence accounts for 18% of all violent incidents (crime in England and Wales 2010/11), 7 per cent of women and 5 per cent of men reported having experienced any domestic violence in 2010/11
  • in the 2010-11 BCS, 73 per cent of incidents of domestic violence were experienced by repeat victims, and of the victims interviewed, just under half were victimised more than once, and nearly a quarter were victimised three or more times
  • every year around 400,000 women are sexually assaulted and 80,000 women raped (BCS 2010/11)
  • domestically, the cost of providing public services (including health, legal and social services) to victims and the lost economic output of women affected runs to billions of pounds. An indicative figure for the minimum and overlapping cost of violence against women and girls is £36.7 billion annually
  • in January to December 2010 the forced marriage unit received 1735 reports relating to possible forced marriage, and provided direct support in 469 assistance and immigration cases
  • approximately 66,000 women with female genital mutilation are living in England and Wales (Forward)

International work

The action plan recognises that violence against women and girls occurs in all countries and is an issue which crosses borders. The Home Office:

  • supports innovative new projects in poorest countries
  • works with international organisations and governments overseas to globally promote women's rights and reduce the impact of conflict on women and girls

Working in partnership

We have to work together to achieve our goal of ending violence against women and girls. It is not a task for central government alone. We work with families and communities to change attitudes. Local authorities, police and crime commissioners, voluntary and community organisations, community safety partnerships, the NHS and more will need to work together to meet the needs of their local communities.


If you have experienced violence visit Directgov, which has information and support. If you are in immediate danger dial 999. 

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