Domestic Homicide Reviews are a statutory requirement and are conducted when the death of a person aged 16 or over has, or appears to have, resulted from violence, abuse, or neglect by a relative, household member or someone they had been in an intimate relationship with.
A review panel consisting of members from local and statutory agencies, led by an independent chair will review each agency’s involvement with the individuals involved and consider recommendations to improve agencies’ responses in the future. In doing this, agencies will improve their responses to domestic violence and abuse, and work better together to prevent such tragedies occurring in the future.
Domestic Homicide Review panels are encouraged to keep the victim at the heart of the review and will invite family members, friends, and work colleagues to participate and provide information that can help the panel build a better picture of the victim and perpetrator and their experience of agencies involvement.
Domestic Homicide Reviews are not inquiries into how someone died or who is to blame. They are not part of any disciplinary process. They do not replace, but will be in addition to, an inquest or any other form of inquiry into the homicide.
The purpose of DHRs is to:
- Establish what lessons are to be learned from the domestic homicide regarding the way in which local professionals and organisations work individually and together to safeguard victims;
- Identify clearly what those lessons are both within and between agencies, how and within what timescales they will be acted on, and what is expected to change as a result;
- Apply these lessons to service responses including changes to inform national and local policies and procedures as appropriate;
- Prevent domestic violence and homicide and improve service responses for all domestic violence and abuse victims and their children by developing a co-ordinated multi-agency approach to ensure that domestic abuse is identified and responded to effectively at the earliest opportunity;
- Contribute to a better understanding of the nature of domestic violence and abuse; and
- Highlight good practice.