According to a leading parliamentary campaigner, the number of stalkers being prosecuted in Scotland outweighs the number prosecuted in Wales and England.
Elfyn Llwyd, Plaid Cymru Westminster leader, was one of the UK’s primary advocates for new powers to tackle stalking.
He said: “In Scotland, during the first 16 months of the new stalking legislation being in force, 362 prosecutions commenced. The total number of cases brought to court in England and Wales during a similar period by contrast was 834.”
The Dwyfor Meirionnydd MP said 38% of police officers and 50% of crown prosecution service staff had received “adequate training to deal with reports of stalking and harassment”.
He said: “I believe the reason Scotland is doing so well is that stalking and harassment are being treated as priority crimes and because victims get advocates. I would strongly encourage police forces throughout England and Wales to adopt this approach without delay.
“The key to increasing prosecution and conviction rates relies on training to change attitudes towards stalking, improve investigation, and secure robust and adequate prosecutions.”
Speaking ahead of a meeting of an all-party group on stalking and harassment, he said: “With new data also showing that at least half of calls passed on to front-line officers are complaints originating from social media, we will also be concentrating efforts on taking action to tackle the growing problem of cyber-crime and online abuse.”
The CSP Academy, host The National Stalking Training Academy (NSTA) which provides specialised training to agencies, organisations and individuals who deal with or have a duty of care to those who are either affected by, or are at risk from stalking.
Its courses are aimed at front line practitioners and organisations to equip them to better deal with this growing issue. The courses include the flagship “Understand and Responding to Stalking” and “Cyberstalking – Technology Risks for Victims”
Click here to proceed to the NSTA section of the CSP Academy website to find out more about the above courses and the work of the NSTA.