We know that every day across Merseyside and in the UK, women and girls are subjected to incidents of violence, hate and sexual assault. These often take place at work, in schools, on public transport, in open spaces, in universities and, sadly, in the place where they should be safest, home.
Sadly, many of these incidents go unreported. We know that far more needs to be done to tackle this.
For this reason, we want the women and girls of Merseyside to know that Merseyside Police is committed to tackling the violence and abuse aimed at them. We will ensure that they are given the support and action that is required at their time of need.
This is a priority.
Together, with our partners, we are undertaking a lot of work with victims and survivors to ensure that the processes we have in place give victims confidence to come forward. We need them to know that they will be supported throughout any investigation and associated judicial proceedings.
As a result of the strong partnership work we have in place, we are also in a position to ensure that those who need additional assistance, such as accommodation or emotional support, can be signposted to the right organisation so that they get what they need.
A programme of work has been developed for Merseyside Police to ensure we continue to do everything we possibly can to:
support women and girls
We aim to create an environment in Merseyside in which women and girls are safe and feel safe to pursue their lives free from fear and harassment.
Merseyside Police is doing the following to keep women and girls safe.
We are policing streets differently
Within our nighttime economy we run Operation Empower, which aims to prevent sexual violence within Liverpool city centre and town centres across Merseyside. This means that we are proactively patrolling to spot men displaying predatory behaviour, working closely with security and bar staff to help them to spot the signs and intervene when something doesn’t look right.
We're collating data from the StreetSafe tool
The StreetSafe tool allows people to anonymously report where they have felt unsafe. We combine information gathered from StreetSafe with our own data, which helps us understand how we can improve feelings of safety in particular areas. This includes both behavioural or environmental issues.
We have increased resources in our dedicated rape unit
These increased resources are to better support victims of rape and ensure that more cases reach court.
We have implemented a perpetrator programme
This is to identify and manage domestic abuse perpetrators and work closely with partners to reduce harm.
We have partnered with Liverpool and Knowsley councils
These partnerships are to increase feelings of safety on public transport and to make the nighttime economy safer for women and girls.
We are listening to the voices of Merseyside police officers and staff
We are taking positive action in response to any concerns raised about inappropriate behaviours in the workplace. We are actively ensuring our officers and staff know how to report discriminatory or unethical behaviours via our internal reporting systems. We are telling the public when an officer has breached the standards expected or committed a criminal offence, and what action we have taken.
We are measuring our performance
We are measuring our performance in relation to crimes of violence against women and girls, via a dedicated dashboard.
We have improved our response to domestic abuse incidents
We are enhancing supervision of violence against women and girls investigations and identifying training requirements to improve the knowledge of officers.
We are listening to victims and building trust
We are listening to victims more and more about their experiences with reporting and the criminal justice system. We are improving victim experience and building trust.