Bournemouth Daily Echo News Article – Dorset Police launch programme to educate domestic abuse offenders – 29 March 2021

DORSET Police has launched a new programme to protect victims of domestic abuse by challenging and changing the behaviours of serial offenders and those deemed to be the most high-risk.

The DRIVE programme, which is delivered by Southampton based foundation Hampton Trust, is a partnership initiative between Dorset Police, Office of the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner, BCP Council and Dorset Council.

The first six months of the programme is funded by a grant from the Home Office.

While many services rightly focus on support for victims, far less put an emphasis on rehabilitation of offenders. DRIVE works directly with perpetrators to challenge and support changes in attitudes, beliefs and behaviour.

Dorset Police’s Assistant Chief Constable Sam de Reya said: “We need to change the narrative around domestic abuse and stop asking victims why they didn’t leave and start asking perpetrators why they didn’t stop. That’s exactly what the DRIVE programme does.

“Dorset Police is committed to delivering an outstanding service to the people of Dorset, particularly to those who are most vulnerable. This programme will not only deliver rehabilitation and real behavioural change for domestic abuse offenders, but also the justice that victims so rightly deserve.

“Hampton Trust has done a great job as our delivery partner for the Cautions and Relationship Abuse (CARA) project, and I’m really glad we could continue that relationship through the DRIVE programme.”

With one in ten offenders still living with the victim, the campaign aims to reduce harm to partners and children and stop cycles of abuse.

Dorset Police is only the second force in the South West to deliver this programme.

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