A national register to monitor men who harass or are violent towards women is being considered

Monday, 15th March 2021, 11:19 am
Updated Monday, 15th March 2021, 11:19 am
The register would act as an 'early warning system' (Photo: Shutterstock)

In the wake of Sarah Everard's murder, government ministers are reportedly considering a register for men who harass or are violent towards women.

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland and Home Secretary Priti Patel are looking to support a so-called "super-database" detailing the estimated 50,000 men convicted each year of offences, including stalking, coercive control and harassment, The Times reports.

The database would be modelled on the existing sex offender's register which was established in 1997. This register already holds information on those who have been convicted, cautioned or released from prison for sexual offences against either children or adults.

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Sarah's law

Under "Sarah's law", parents and carers are able to ask police if a person is on the existing sex offender's register. The law was introduced in the wake of the murder of eight year old Sarah Payne in 2000.

Ministers hope the new database would act as an "early warning system", with police and social services given access to information on when men commit certain crimes or move into a local area.

Already, ministers are set to debate an amendment to the Domestic Abuse Bill which would create a database for offenders.

Claire Waxman, London’s victims’ commissioner, told The Times such a register would be a “step towards the police and relevant agencies being able effectively to identify and monitor serial abusers and stalkers with a consistent information-sharing approach”.

Ministers will also be voting on plans to make misogyny a hate crime as part of the Domestic Abuse Bill - something 11 out of 43 police constabularies are either considering or have trialled.

Stella Creasy, Labour MP for Walthamstow, who is involved in coordinating the hate crime amendment, said: "Good policing relies on good intelligence both in terms of where crimes are happening and repeat offenders. [These plans] are about finally taking women’s experiences of harassment seriously."

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), domestic abuse related crimes rose in England and Wales in the year to March 2020 by nine per cent.

The number of successful prosecutions, meanwhile, dropped by 22 per cent, from 78,624 to 61,169.