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Hidden Abuse

AIM: Improved police awareness and robust prosecution of those practising ‘more hidden’ forms of abuse, including coercive control, stalking, harassment, honour based abuse (HBA) and forced marriage.


Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner

  • Over £3m of funding provided to Local Authorities across the Thames Valley to tackle local priorities including hidden harm.
  • Launch of awareness campaign ‘Know This Isn’t Love’ to raise awareness of coercive and controlling behaviours and signpost victims to support through Victims First.

Thames Valley Police

  • Phase 3 of the Hidden Harm campaign raised awareness of Honour Based Abuse and Forced Marriage to communities in the Thames Valley and internally to officers and staff. The campaign had an estimated reach of over 1.5 million people.
  • Messaging from the previous two phases of the hidden harm campaign, which focused on modern slavery and child abuse has reached 1.4 million people on social media.
  • The Protecting Vulnerable People (PVP) department has nearly completed the SaVE 3 training for officers and staff which focuses on missing people, stalking and harassment. The programme has been developed taking into account recent Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) inspections, College of Policing reports and internal audits. 
  • Protecting Vulnerable People (PVP) has developed a “plan on a page” with the aim of supporting victims and providing a "first class standard of investigation" at its heart.
  • New honour based abuse guidance has been published to assist officers and staff in dealing with honour based abuse incidents and providing support to victims.
  • Through the SaVE programme there have been a number of dedicated communications plans which have looked to increase the knowledge and confidence of the public, police and partners in recognising these "hidden harm" crimes such as modern slavery, honour based abuse and domestic abuse, and so increase our ability to deal with them.
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Liaison Officers (LAGLO+) continue to deliver hidden harm training and information sessions at schools and public events across Local Policing Areas (LPA).
  • LPAs are working with Force Intelligence Hubs to identify modern day slavery victims and those in brothels. Victims to be treated appropriately with support, diversion from offending and protection from criminals.
  • Protecting Vulnerable People (PVP) now manage Serious Crime Prevention Order cases ensuring better links with probation and management of offenders.