Russia has come a step closer to decriminalising domestic abuse! With only one domestic abuse hotline available in the entire country and rarely enforced imprisonment, domestic abuse is hardly seen as a criminal offence.
If this law is passed, physically hurting a spouse or child will only result in a fine of less than $500 and 15 days of ‘administrative arrest’ or community service. For the law to be passed, it will need to go through evaluation in the Russian parliament, and then it will be up to Russian President Vladimir Putin to validate the law.
Russian expert Yulia Gorbunova of Human Rights Watch expressed her views regarding the consideration of this new law: “Passage of this law would be a huge step backward for Russia, where victims of domestic violence already face enormous obstacles to getting help or justice. The domestic violence bill would reduce penalties for abusers and put victims’ lives at even greater risk”.
In Russia, up to 40 women a day and 14,000 women a year die due to domestic abuse by their spouse, whilst 600,000 face domestic abuse every year. Furthermore, 40 per cent of all violent crimes take place in the home.
Domestic abuse has internal as well as external consequences and many suffer in silence. At the UCKG HelpCentre, we do not only provide 24-hour one-to-one help (which has anonymity), but we also have designated groups which aim specifically to help victims of domestic abuse.
RAHAB (Removing All Hurt and Abuse) helps women who have suffered from or are suffering from domestic abuse. With mentors who have been victims themselves, the group aims to help women overcome the hurt and pain they have suffered by providing advice and support.
If you would like more information, please call our 24hr helpline on 020 7686 6000.