Thanks to funding secured by the Mayor of London’s Office for Policing and Crime as part of the Home Office’s Domestic Abuse Perpetrator Intervention Fund, the Drive Project – the Drive Partnership’s flagship intervention – is now being launched as a pan-London service. This expansion follows the successful delivery of the intervention in the South London Borough Command Unit since its implementation in Croydon in 2018.
The Drive Project will work with high-harm, high-risk and serial perpetrators of domestic abuse across London to prevent their abusive behaviour and increase both the immediate and long-term safety of adult and child victim-survivors. The innovative intervention challenges perpetrators directly to change their behaviour and attitudes, and works with partner agencies to disrupt abuse and better protect victim-survivors. Across London, the Drive Project will be delivered by Rise Mutual in close partnership with local services, including the police and social services.
The Drive Project was first launched in April 2016 to address a systemic gap in the response to high-harm, high-risk and serial perpetrators of abuse, and is currently being delivered in seven police force areas across England and Wales. Areas in which the Drive Project has been implemented have seen a significant reduction in the use of abusive behaviour amongst service users, and an independent evaluation undertaken by the University of Bristol found that, as a result of the intervention, the number of perpetrators using physical abuse reduced by 82%; sexual abuse reduced by 88%; harassment and stalking behaviours reduced by 75%; and jealous and controlling behaviours reduced by 73%.
Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor of London for Policing and Crime, said: “Tackling Violence Against Women and Girls is a key priority for the Mayor and I – and through his VAWG Strategy we are working with the police and partner agencies to take a public health approach that tackles these crimes and their underlying causes. Providing specialist interventions with perpetrators to address their behaviour is a vital element of that approach, helping to reduce offending and increase the safety of victims and survivors. The Drive Project has proven its effectiveness in reducing the risk of harm posed by perpetrators of domestic abuse in South London and I’m delighted we are now able to roll it out across the whole of London.”
Kuljit Sandhu, CEO at Rise Mutual, said: “Domestic abuse is a devastating crime that shatters the lives of children and families, and has a lasting impact on the community. We’ve seen first-hand the impact of innovative interventions such as the Drive Project through our delivery of the service in Croydon, and we’re delighted that we will be able to expand this service across London to hold perpetrators to account and better protect victim-survivors.”
Director of The Drive Partnership, Kyla Kirkpatrick, said: “Responding effectively to high-harm, high-risk and serial perpetrators of domestic abuse is vital to the safety and freedom of victim-survivors, and to stopping the cycle of domestic abuse for good. Through the Drive Project, we aim to do this by disrupting, challenging and changing the behaviour of those who are causing harm, and we’re grateful to be able to partner with the Mayor of London’s Office for Policing and Crime, Rise Mutual, and other local partner agencies to expand this innovative intervention across London.”