Pat Branigan from the NSPCC delivered keynote at Conference on Sexual and Domestic Abuse in the Lives of Children and Young People. 1st March 2019

DMU’s SVDV Research Network partnered with Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland’s Civil and Criminal Justice Working Group to host a conference for practitioners and academics on Sexual and Domestic Abuse in the Lives of Children and Young People in March 2019. We had the pleasure of welcoming Pat Branigan from the NSPCC to join our other excellent key note speakers . He leads on the NSPCC’s response to child sexual abuse, with a focus on the prevention of harmful sexual behaviour adopted by children and young people.

Highly Regarded Sexualised Trauma Specialist delivered keynote at conference on March 1st 2019

We were delighted that Zoe Lodrick accepted our invitation to join our other excellent keynote speaker, Pat Branigan (NSPCC) at our March 2019 conference, organised with our friends from the Civil and Criminal Justice Working Group (DV). Of her many credentials Zoe was honoured to deliver the inaugural Moira Jones Memorial Lecture, at COPFS Annual Conference in Glasgow, and to be awarded the Moira Jones Memorial Bowl in recognition of her work to increase understanding of sexualised trauma within the criminal justice system in 2010.

She is an inspirational speaker for the delegates at our conference on Sexual and Domestic Abuse in the Lives of Children and Young People, which included practitioners in statutory agencies and voluntary organisations, academics, students and members of the public. We welcomed people from local, national and international regions.

SVDV Seminar: John Worboys and Parole Board decision-making? 24th September

DMU’s SVDV Research Network’s were delighted to host Danielle Bates and Professor Gavin Dingwall from DMU’s School of Law on 24th September 2018.

They presented a paper entitled:

How has the John Worboys decision altered Parole Board decision-making?

Danielle and Gavin provided an overview of the High Court decision to quash a recommendation to release serial sex offender John Worboys taken by the Parole Board. After discussing the background to the case, they focused on three aspects of the ruling: that the decision made by the Parole Board was not irrational; the use of evidence in decision-making; and the changes that were made to the Parole Board rules following the decision. They assessed how these changes are operating in practice and how it will affect those offenders coming before the Parole Board in future.

Danielle graduated from DMU Law School this summer and has been working with Professor Dingwall as a research assistant.

Professor Gavin Dingwall has interests in a number of areas of criminal law and penology and is author of several esteemed publications including Blamestorming, Blamemongers and Scapegoats: Allocating blame in the criminal justice process (with Tim Hillier, Policy Press, 2016).

The seminar was well attended by members of the network and wider friends, which prompted a lively debate.

Service User Involvement Event 15th June 2018

Empowering those affected by sexual or domestic violence: What does service user involvement mean and how can it be implemented across service providers?

This well attended event was hosted by members of the network: Professor Julie Fish, Ana Szabo and Di Turgoose, following their work on service user involvement funded by the Leicester City Council and supported by a number of local service providers.

Discussions were plentiful and future plans for developing research in this area and supporting service user involvement in services are under development.





SVDV Network Meeting Wed 25th April 1-4: Response to Domestic Abuse Consultation


You are invited to participate in DMU’s SVDV Research Network’s next meeting where we will discuss our response to the Domestic Abuse Consultation. The Consultation launched on 8 March 2018 and looks at measures to be included in the draft Domestic Abuse Bill.

You can read more about the consultation here:

Whether you are a local academic, a member of an external local statutory or charitable agency or a victim/survivor you are all welcome.

If you are able to join us on the 25th April 1-4 please could you contact Di Turgoose at<>  to confirm your attendance.

If you are unable to attend on the 25th April but would like to contribute or have any queries please contact Di Turgoose at<>

After the meeting, Di Turgoose will finalise the response on the SVDV network’s behalf.

The Chatham House Rule will apply to the event and any correspondence received. This means that whilst your name and organisational affiliation will be included in the list of contributors to the response, they will not be attributed to any  of your comments or views, which will remain anonymous. We may use your anonymous contributions in further research about the UK government’s approach to the protection of survivors and legislation around domestic abuse.

Coercion, Trauma and Women in the Criminal Justice System (12 May 2017, 2-4pm)

I Felt Trapped And I Couldn’t See Another Option: Women Co-offenders’ Pathways Into Crime And Experiences Of Coercion

Dr Charlotte Barlow (Lancaster University) will discuss the growing body of literature which supports the claim that women follow distinct and often gendered pathways into crime. (Daly, 1992; Belknap & Holsinger, 2006).

Women Offenders, Trauma and Community Based Interventions

Sara Swire, CEO (New Dawn New Day) will discuss the work of the charity New Dawn New Day, which has sought to improve the lives of women and girls particularly those who have complex needs for almost 30 years.

This seminar will focus on women in the criminal justice system, but it will also be of wider interest to colleagues in other fields of discipline and practice whose work relate to trauma and the use of coercion.
This seminar is open to all staff, students, statutory and voluntary sector.

Registration: Email Vanessa Bettinson

Took place 12 May 2017

Flyer for Coercion and Trauma seminar (PDF)


Coercion and Control Conference hosted at DMU (11th Nov 2016)

The Coercion and Control in the commission of sexual violence and domestic violence  conference was a great success at De Montfort University on the 11th November 2016. With fantastic inputs from: Ruth Aitken from REFUGE, Vanessa Bettinson from DMU and Professor Anne-Marie McAlinden from Queen’s University Belfast. Cross cutting discipline presentations from Media, Law, Arts, Social Work, Health and Criminology. Pictured here are the Written Foundations company that include actors, writers and directors who produced a powerful piece of drama for the event, drawing upon the real life experiences of survivors and practitioners.

For more information, see:

2016 Conference – Keynote Speakers

2016 Conference – Keynote Abstracts

Students interview Leicester SV DV practitioners for research project

Undergraduate Criminology students, Sophie Hoey, Aleksandra Smagiel and Kayleigh Perrett (pictured here with their supervisor Sarah Hilder) have been working hard over the summer 2016 period interviewing local professionals and researching strategies which might increase public engagement with SVDV issues and support. They are reporting back to Leicester City colleagues in the autumn and their work will also form the basis of their final year dissertations for their degrees!