A NEW multi-agency task group has been launched in Hampshire to tackle violence against women and girls.

Hampshire Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), Donna Jones launched the scheme on Friday which will see Hampshire Constabulary, partners across the criminal justice system and local authorities work together to prevent this type of crime.

The Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Task Group is aimed at improving the operational response and support given to victims as well as focussing on stopping it happening through prevention, and targeting and disrupting perpetrators.

Crimes of violence against women and girls include rape and other sexual offences, stalking, domestic abuse, ‘honour-based abuse’, ‘revenge porn’ and ‘upskirting’, as well as many others.

The task group will focus on violence against women and girls because these types of violence and abuse disproportionately affect females.

Daily Echo: PCC Donna Jones

Commissioner Jones, who is also National Lead for Victims, said: “Violence against women and girls has been an issue in this country for generations, but recent high profile cases have brought this to the forefront of the Government’s priorities.

“VAWG offences cause significant harm and distress to victims and through the task group I want to ensure that crimes of violence against women and girls are given the focus they need across the criminal justice system.

“I know that by creating this joint task force with Hampshire Constabulary and working together we can tackle and prevent these types of crimes but more can be done by working in partnership with other criminal justice partners to provide specialist support services for victims and prevention of offending.

“It is my ambition that the VAWG Task Group will have the most robust approach across the country to tackling and preventing crimes of violence against women and girls.”

Support for all victims of any crime continues to be available through the Victim Care Service and other funded services by the Commissioner.

Deputy Chief Constable Ben Snuggs said: “This multi-agency task group is an important step in achieving a whole system, partnership approach to tackling the issue in our communities.”