Actions taken on legal aid
In June 2011, the government published proposed reforms to the legal aid system. Amid concerns that the plans risked disproportionately impacting victims of domestic violence the NFWI launched a campaign to highlight the potential impact of the reforms and secure improvements to ensure the subsequent legislation would not leave domestic violence victims unprotected. You can read about our work on the Legal Aid Bill on this page.
On the 1st May 2012 the Legal Aid, Punishment and Sentencing of Offenders Bill received Royal Assent. Read our report rounding up the campaign outcomes.
Justice for All Rally and Day of Action
In June 2011 WI members took part in a rally outside the Supreme Court organised by the Justice for All coalition to protest against the legal aid reforms.
The NFWI and other women’s organisations symbolically taped up their mouths to represent women being silenced by the legal aid reforms.
To coincide with the day of action Ruth Bond, Chair of the NFWI, wrote an open letter to the Justice Secretary together with other women’s organisations to raise concerns about the disproportionate impact the legal aid reforms on women. Read Ruth’s letter here.
Legal Aid is a Lifeline Research
The NFWI conducted research into violence against women and legal aid to inform the development of the reforms and build the evidence base on the impact on victims of domestic violence. The findings from our research are clear; legal aid is a vital life-saving resource for women who experience violence. Read our report here.
Paired up with Peers
As the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill was been debated in the House of Lords, WI members and members of the community to ‘Paired up with Peers’ to highlight the importance of access to legal aid and advice.
Our campaigns film features WI members and some of the women who took part in our research. Spread the word about the NFWI legal aid campaign by showing the film at your WI meeting or at another meeting in your local community.
For a copy of the film please contact the Public Affairs team on 0207 371 9300 or select Public Affairs/Campaigns on the "contact us" form.
Actions taken on service provision
WI members made ‘Map of Gaps’ quilt to highlight patchy provision of violence against women support services
In 2009 WI members made a ‘Map of Gaps’ quilt to help publicise research by the Equality and Human Rights Commission that demonstrated the postcode lottery of violence against women support services; one in four local authorities lack any specialist support services.The majority of these cover rural areas.
NFWI research into violence against women in rural and urban areas
In 2009 the NFWI commissioned research into violence against women in rural and urban areas. The research found that women who live in the countryside experience the same levels of violence as women who live in urban areas; however the perception was that violence against women is more common in towns and cities. The research also found that all women struggle to access specialist support services they can trust, but women who live in rural areas face additional problems such as issues around confidentiality, and lack of access to transport. Read the report here.
Contact the NFWI
- Phone: 020 7371 9300
- Open hours: 9am–5pm Mon–Fri
- Address: 104 New Kings Road, London SW6 4LY
Or fill in the contact form... to email a specific department