Cuts to domestic violence services, refuges and legal aid have resulted in increased levels of risk for women targeted by men
The latest UK Femicide Census shows that, despite more than 50 years of feminist campaigning against male violence, the number of women and girls dying at the hands of men is increasing. The annual report on such crime in the UK shows that of the 149 women killed in 2018, the vast majority – 91 – died at the hands of a current or former partner; 12 were killed by sons or stepsons; five by a current or former son-in-law. Only nine were killed by a stranger or where there was no known relationship. Three of the perpetrators had killed women previously.
Karen Ingala Smith, the founder of Counting Dead Women, from which the Femicide Census grew, first collected data in January 2012. She began after looking into the death of Kirsty Treloar, a young woman who had been in touch with a domestic violence charity Ingala Smith was involved with. It was later found that Treloar was murdered by her boyfriend. Once she started, Ingala Smith found she could not stop. No one else was doing this work, and yet domestic violence alone kills 15 times more women annually than terrorism.