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Cooper warns rapists ‘the police will be after you’ under Labour government

The shadow home secretary used her keynote speech at the party conference to set out Labour’s strategy to tackle violence against women and girls.

Martina Bet
Tuesday 10 October 2023 12:49 BST
The shadow home secretary said she was ‘sick and tired’ of women who faced abuse and violence ‘being failed’ (Peter Byrne/PA)
The shadow home secretary said she was ‘sick and tired’ of women who faced abuse and violence ‘being failed’ (Peter Byrne/PA) (PA Wire)

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper has warned rapists and abusers “the police will be after you” under a Labour government.

Ms Cooper used her keynote speech at the party conference to set out Labour’s strategy to tackle violence against women and girls.

She told the conference hall that she was “sick and tired” of women who faced abuse and violence “being failed”, generation after generation.

The next Labour government, she said, would put rape investigation units in every force, domestic abuse experts in every 999 call centre and would require police forces to use tactics normally reserved for terrorist investigations.

Sharing a personal story, Ms Cooper began her speech saying: “My great-great-grandmother was attacked by her husband. First when she was pregnant. The report says he struck and kicked her so she could not sit or lie in bed.

“Then he attacked her with a poker. In front of her daughter. The case went to court, the magistrates bound him over to keep the peace.

“But you know the most shocking thing about that story? That is more protection from the police and courts than many domestic abuse victims get today.”

We will require police forces to use tactics normally reserved for organised crime or terrorist investigations to identify and go after the most dangerous repeat abusers and rapists and get them off our streets

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper

She noted how change had been talked about for years, adding: “But I am sick and tired of women who face abuse and violence being failed – generation after generation.”

Setting out Labour’s strategy, she said: “Enough is enough, we will not stand for this anymore.

“The next Labour government will put rape investigation units in every force, domestic abuse experts in every 999 call centre. We will require police forces to use tactics normally reserved for organised crime or terrorist investigations to identify and go after the most dangerous repeat abusers and rapists and get them off our streets.

“Know this: if you abuse and hurt women, under a Labour government the police will be after you.”

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