Honour based abuse

the response by professionals to vulnerable adult investigations

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose

Thepurpose of this paper is to examine responses by police and Adult Social Careto honour based abuse (HBA) victims who have a diagnosed or perceivedvulnerability, such as a physical disability or mental health issue. The aim isto improve professional practice in ensuring vulnerable victims aresafeguarded.

Design/methodology/approach

Findingsare drawn from 100 HBA investigations (2012-2014) derived from classifiedpolice electronic records and interviews with 15, predominantly specialist,public protection police officers in one UK force.

Findings

HBA against vulnerable adults is an obscure crime area. In cases of diagnosedvulnerability (3 per cent), police officers wrongly attributed “freewill” and choice to vulnerable adults who legally lacked the capacity to consent to marriage. Conversely, in 9 per cent of cases where victims were depressedand/or self-harming, perpetrators exaggerated the poor mental health of victimsin order to discredit them to law enforcement. Professionals illogically latched onto perpetrator explanations and in turn undermined and problematised the victims.

Research limitations/implications

There is limited access to data on vulnerable adult abuse, making this an underresearched area of crime.

Practical implications

Failing to undertake risk assessments, or record whether the victim is legally vulnerable should lead to a review of police practice. An evaluation of jointworking arrangements is necessary concerning which agency (police or Adult Social Care) should take primacy.

Social implications

Vulnerable adult victims were retained in risk predicaments alongside perpetrating familymembers.

Originality/value

Police officers suggesting vulnerable adults can “consent” to marriage is a newconcept, along with issues of goal displacement which illustrates avoidance behaviours by professionals and under protection by the state.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-250
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research
Volume10
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes

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Police
honor
abuse
Crime
Marriage
police
Mental Health
police officer
Avoidance Learning
Law Enforcement
Professional Practice
marriage
mental health
offense
avoidance behavior
physical disability
law enforcement
Interviews
risk assessment
electronics

Cite this

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title = "Honour based abuse: the response by professionals to vulnerable adult investigations",
abstract = "PurposeThepurpose of this paper is to examine responses by police and Adult Social Careto honour based abuse (HBA) victims who have a diagnosed or perceivedvulnerability, such as a physical disability or mental health issue. The aim isto improve professional practice in ensuring vulnerable victims aresafeguarded.Design/methodology/approachFindingsare drawn from 100 HBA investigations (2012-2014) derived from classifiedpolice electronic records and interviews with 15, predominantly specialist,public protection police officers in one UK force.FindingsHBA against vulnerable adults is an obscure crime area. In cases of diagnosedvulnerability (3 per cent), police officers wrongly attributed “freewill” and choice to vulnerable adults who legally lacked the capacity to consent to marriage. Conversely, in 9 per cent of cases where victims were depressedand/or self-harming, perpetrators exaggerated the poor mental health of victimsin order to discredit them to law enforcement. Professionals illogically latched onto perpetrator explanations and in turn undermined and problematised the victims.Research limitations/implicationsThere is limited access to data on vulnerable adult abuse, making this an underresearched area of crime.Practical implicationsFailing to undertake risk assessments, or record whether the victim is legally vulnerable should lead to a review of police practice. An evaluation of jointworking arrangements is necessary concerning which agency (police or Adult Social Care) should take primacy.Social implicationsVulnerable adult victims were retained in risk predicaments alongside perpetrating familymembers.Originality/valuePolice officers suggesting vulnerable adults can “consent” to marriage is a newconcept, along with issues of goal displacement which illustrates avoidance behaviours by professionals and under protection by the state.",
keywords = "Disability, Honour based abuse, Mental health, Policing, Self-harming, Vulnerable adult abuse",
author = "Aplin, {Rachael L.}",
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N2 - PurposeThepurpose of this paper is to examine responses by police and Adult Social Careto honour based abuse (HBA) victims who have a diagnosed or perceivedvulnerability, such as a physical disability or mental health issue. The aim isto improve professional practice in ensuring vulnerable victims aresafeguarded.Design/methodology/approachFindingsare drawn from 100 HBA investigations (2012-2014) derived from classifiedpolice electronic records and interviews with 15, predominantly specialist,public protection police officers in one UK force.FindingsHBA against vulnerable adults is an obscure crime area. In cases of diagnosedvulnerability (3 per cent), police officers wrongly attributed “freewill” and choice to vulnerable adults who legally lacked the capacity to consent to marriage. Conversely, in 9 per cent of cases where victims were depressedand/or self-harming, perpetrators exaggerated the poor mental health of victimsin order to discredit them to law enforcement. Professionals illogically latched onto perpetrator explanations and in turn undermined and problematised the victims.Research limitations/implicationsThere is limited access to data on vulnerable adult abuse, making this an underresearched area of crime.Practical implicationsFailing to undertake risk assessments, or record whether the victim is legally vulnerable should lead to a review of police practice. An evaluation of jointworking arrangements is necessary concerning which agency (police or Adult Social Care) should take primacy.Social implicationsVulnerable adult victims were retained in risk predicaments alongside perpetrating familymembers.Originality/valuePolice officers suggesting vulnerable adults can “consent” to marriage is a newconcept, along with issues of goal displacement which illustrates avoidance behaviours by professionals and under protection by the state.

AB - PurposeThepurpose of this paper is to examine responses by police and Adult Social Careto honour based abuse (HBA) victims who have a diagnosed or perceivedvulnerability, such as a physical disability or mental health issue. The aim isto improve professional practice in ensuring vulnerable victims aresafeguarded.Design/methodology/approachFindingsare drawn from 100 HBA investigations (2012-2014) derived from classifiedpolice electronic records and interviews with 15, predominantly specialist,public protection police officers in one UK force.FindingsHBA against vulnerable adults is an obscure crime area. In cases of diagnosedvulnerability (3 per cent), police officers wrongly attributed “freewill” and choice to vulnerable adults who legally lacked the capacity to consent to marriage. Conversely, in 9 per cent of cases where victims were depressedand/or self-harming, perpetrators exaggerated the poor mental health of victimsin order to discredit them to law enforcement. Professionals illogically latched onto perpetrator explanations and in turn undermined and problematised the victims.Research limitations/implicationsThere is limited access to data on vulnerable adult abuse, making this an underresearched area of crime.Practical implicationsFailing to undertake risk assessments, or record whether the victim is legally vulnerable should lead to a review of police practice. An evaluation of jointworking arrangements is necessary concerning which agency (police or Adult Social Care) should take primacy.Social implicationsVulnerable adult victims were retained in risk predicaments alongside perpetrating familymembers.Originality/valuePolice officers suggesting vulnerable adults can “consent” to marriage is a newconcept, along with issues of goal displacement which illustrates avoidance behaviours by professionals and under protection by the state.

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