Police takes proactive steps to help victims as family violence cases surge in Singapore

Domestic violence increased by 22 percent after circuit breaker started

Family violence has been surging since the 'circuit breaker' measures started on April 7 in Singapore. To help the victims with high risk, authorities are evoked to take proactive measures according to the latest police figures. There have been 476 police reports filed from April 7 to May 6 for offenses mostly associated with family violence.

According to the police statement released on Thursday, the monthly average for such cases was 389 before the circuit breaker started. These misconducts generally include assault, using criminal force, and criminal intimidation, causing hurt and wrongful confinement. As the circuit breaker has been extended till June 1, authorities have decided to support the victims dealing with family brutality.

Police will assess the risks of sufferers who are encountering more domestic abuse. Those who are at higher risk will be referred to social services by police even if they do not receive a request for help and shelter. "In making these assessments, the police will consider a number of factors, including the profiles of their offenders and the nature of violence inflicted," police said.

Issues leading to offenders committing violent act will also be underlined

Man jailed for hurting wife
(Representational picture) Pixabay

The crisis shelters supported by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) will also be referred to victims who request help. Regular checks will be kept on sufferers by contacting them and figuring out if they need more help. Support to offenders will also be provided in order to address the root cause of family violence by the police. During the support, issues that lead such offenders to commit a violent act against their family members are going to be underlined.

Social workers will assess if offenders need counseling, mental health assistance, or financial assistance when they are referred to suitable agencies for help. The initiative is now available at all police land divisions in Singapore which was first piloted at Bedok Police Division last year.

These supplement measures to prevent domestic violence incidents came after the set up of the inter-agency task force in February. This task-force comes up with initiatives to increase public awareness regarding domestic abuse. It encourages people to report such cases and come forward to seek help through hotline numbers provided by MSF and its partners. The Straits Times reported, Mr. Sun who co-chairs task force said, "We need to keep the victims of family violence on our radar and ensure that harm does not happen to them again."

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