Sanctuary Scheme

The primary aim of the Sanctuary Scheme is to protect victims of domestic abuse in their own homes.

The Secured by Design (SBD) Sanctuary Scheme was developed by a former Metropolitan Police Officer who is now a Technical Advisor with Police CPI in 1998 and adopted nationally in 2006, to give those at risk of domestic abuse, who no longer live with the perpetrator, the option to stay safely in their own homes and put down social roots.

This is achieved by increasing the security on all easily accessible doors and windows to delay entry to the perpetrator and by converting an existing room within the home into a secure safe room, including fire safety measures, to provide the family with a safe place to await the arrival of the emergency services.

Since its creation in 1998, the scheme has successfully helped thousands of victims of domestic abuse remain safely in their homes and maintain their social roots. It has also resulted in huge savings for police forces, healthcare services and local authorities, with less serious assaults to investigate, less families to re-house and less children to re-school.

11% of people accepted as homeless by local authorities in England and Wales had become homeless because of a violent relationship breakdown*

There were 758,941 incidents of domestic abuse related crimes reported to the police in England and Wales in the year ending 31st March 2020**

- The social and economic costs for domestic abuse per victim is calculated at £34,015**

- The estimated total cost of a domestic murder in England and Wales is £2,230,640**

- The estimated overall costs of domestic abuse in England and Wales is £66 billion**

- There were 357 domestic murders between March 2017 and March 2019***

For further information contact Mark Dowse  

* Safe at Home: Homelessness and Domestic Abuse, May 2018

** Office of National Statistics

*** Crime Survey for England and Wales

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