22 April 2021

The RCSLT has welcomed a commitment from the Government to revise draft statutory guidance for the Domestic Abuse Bill so that it specifically references speech, language and communication needs.

Lord Parkinson, speaking on behalf of the Government, said: “We will revise the guidance to make further express reference to speech, language and communication needs, in relation to not just those with special educational needs, but the links between domestic abuse and those with communication needs, specifically children and young people.”

RCSLT members had significant input into the guidance, helping to shape the revisions.

While the Government has yet to confirm next steps, the RCSLT hopes that references to victims, witnesses, and perpetrators of domestic abuse, as well as explicitly detailing the important role of speech and language therapists (SLTs) in this field, will make it to the final report.

SLTs working with victims or perpetrators of domestic abuse who are interested in getting involved in the RCSLT’s influencing work can contact padraigin.oflynn@rcslt.org.