LGSCO's Domestic Abuse Focus Report

Publish date: 25/11/2021

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman Focus Report: Learning to improve council services for domestic abuse victims.

Mick King, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman shares some information regarding the LGSCO's Domestic Abuse Focus Report.

"This report highlights the experiences of a small group of survivors of domestic abuse who were let down by their local authority when they went to it for help.

We investigate complaints about the way councils administer their duties towards victims of domestic abuse. Councils may encounter victims of domestic abuse across a range of services they deliver, for example homelessness services or children's social services. Common issues we see include delays in dealing with homelessness applications, failing to recognise when someone is a victim of domestic abuse, failure to work collaboratively with other agencies, and poor communication.

The cases in this report pre-date the new Domestic Abuse Act. We are sharing the learning from our cases now as we think it will prove useful for local authorities as they take on more responsibilities in this area.

The report shares good practice and learning points from our investigations to help improve the quality of services more widely. Due to the nature of domestic abuse, failure to act and errors can lead to a person being placed in immediate danger or being made homeless. It is therefore vitally important councils learn from the mistakes we are highlighting."

You can find a copy of this report on the LGSCO's website: https://www.lgo.org.uk/information-centre/news/2021/nov/ombudsman-issues-guidance-to-help-domestic-abuse-survivors