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Domestic Abuse

Domestic Abuse 7 min briefing 

Risk and Impact of Domestic Violence

Domestic Abuse (DA) undermines a child's basic need for safety and security. It can have a serious effect on their behaviour, brain development, education outcomes and overall wellbeing. DA is a serious risk factor for all children, and it is a factor in adolescent relationships as well. The number of cases subject to a  CSPR  where DA is a factor is increasing year on year.

Understanding the impacts of domestic abuse

Experiencing domestic abuse is defined in legislation as harmful and abusive to children. Living with domestic abuse can profoundly disrupt a child’s development, affecting their environment, undermining their stability, interrupting their attachment to caregivers, and negatively impacting their physical, mental and emotional health.

The impact on the child are the result of the perpetrator’s decision to use abusive behaviours, and the tactics and impact of domestic abuse can interrupt the non-abusing parent/carer’s ability to provide care. As a result, the protection and empowerment of the non-abusing parent and recognition of the perpetrator's pattern of coercive control are fundamental to the protection of the children.

Because domestic abuse is driven by power and control, any changes (including professional involvement) may escalate the abuse and increase the risk faced by the non-abusing parent and child/ren. It is important, when intervening to protect a child, to consider how to best to undertake this safely in partnership with the non-abusing parent.

In cases involving domestic abuse it is essential that a DASH risk assessment  for the non-abusing parent is undertaken alongside risk assessment frameworks for children, such as the Barnardo’s Domestic Abuse Risk Identification Matrix .

Parents and professionals can minimise the impact of domestic abuse on children, especially when the children are young. In fact, research shows that younger children are likely to be exposed to more domestic abuse than older children, and they are less able to process it.

Domestic abuse usually impacts every aspect of a child’s life, although it will vary according to the child’s resilience, the dynamics of their particular circumstances, and the interventions they’re enabled to access to process and recover from the abuse.


The three central imperatives of any intervention for children living with domestic abuse are:

  • To protect the child/ren, including unborn child/ren;
  • To empower the non-abusive parent to protect themselves and their child/ren;
  • To hold the abusive parent/partner accountable for their abuse and provide them with opportunities to change.

Assessment and Safety Planning

Where professionals are concerned about the care a child is receiving or about their parent/s, the presence of domestic abuse should be considered.

Professionals should make contact with the presumed non-abusive parent first and in a way which prioritises their safety, unless there are immediate risks of harm to the child/ren. Giving or sending written materials to a non-abusive parent or children may jeopardise their safety.

The parent experiencing the abuse will usually, but not always, be well placed to predict the risks they face and the likelihood of further abuse. Practitioners should nevertheless be aware that abused parties can underestimate the risk of harm to themselves and their children from perpetrators of domestic abuse.


Support for Victims of Domestic Abuse in Haringey




In an emergency, or if a crime is currently taking place, always dial 999. You can use the silent solution if you’re unable to speak.

You can report crimes that have already happened online or by calling 111

National Domestic Violence Helpline

   0808 2000 247 (24hrs)


   0300 012 0213 (Mon-Fri, 10am-5.30pm)

Haringey Domestic Violence Advice & Support Centre (for all genders)

   020 8888 5362 Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm

Imece (for BAME women)

   0207 3541359 (Mon-Fri, 9.30 am-5.30 pm)


Galop (for LGBTQ+ victim/survivors)

   0800 999 5428

Haringey Police Community Safety Unit

   020 8345 1941

Haringey Victim Support

   020 8888 9878

Respect Phoneline (for people perpetrating DA)

   0808 8010327

Haringey VAWG Services Pathway Padlet

Hearthstone provides emotional and practical support for anyone experiencing domestic abuse in Haringey, including legal advice, housing advice, access to refuge accommodation, access to counselling and safety planning.

Read more about Hearthstone .



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Report Abuse

MASH Report Abuse and Neglect

If you are worried about a child for any reason, contact MASH on 020 8489 4470.

If you are making a referral: childrensportalehm

If you are calling between 5pm and 9am weekdays or anytime at the weekend, call the Emergency out-of-hours duty team on 020 8489 0000.

If you or a child is in immediate danger you should always phone 999.

Allegations Against Staff - LADO

Please use LADO Referral Form updated April 2024.docx  for the LADO:

Contact LADO:

Email: LADO@haringey.gov.uk
T. 020 8489 2968

All allegations should be reported without delay to:

Haringey Safeguarding Children Partnership 
5th Floor, 48 Station Road
Wood Green
N22 7TY

View the latest LADO Annual Report 2022-23 Final.pdf 

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