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Clare’s Law users speak out in favour of the service to help protect others against domestic abuse.


‘This is the second time I have used the Clare’s Law Scheme and I will continue to do so to keep myself and my child safe.’


Those are the brave words of a woman who has spoken up in support of the Clare’s Law disclosure scheme – and is encouraging others to use the service.


The ground-breaking initiative – formally known as The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) – was first introduced in 2009 to protect anyone at risk of Domestic Abuse.


The law was named after Clare Wood – a woman who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend, who had a history of violent offending against his previous partners, which Clare was not aware of.  Since Clare’s tragic and avoidable death, anyone across the country have been able to request information from any police force under the Right to Ask scheme.


Requests can help confirm suspicions or help people make more informed decisions about their relationship.

Now, those who have used the service for their current or emerging relationship, are sharing their experiences to encourage people to apply so they can spot the early signs of domestic abuse.



Talking about her experience, one user, who has asked to remain anonymous said: “I was very happy with how quick I was contacted following my application being submitted.

 “I suffer with anxiety so receiving an email from the police to say they were in receipt and wanted to have an initial chat with me was reassuring. 

“I was kept in the loop the whole time and the process was made very clear to me.”

 She added: “I found that it was very easy to submit an application online. I have previously completed a Clare’s Law application over the phone and being able to make an application online was a lot easier. 

“I made the application using my mobile phone and didn’t need a computer to do so.”

 When asked whether she would use the service again, she said: “Absolutely, this is the second time I have used it and I will continue to, to keep myself and my child safe.”

In the past 12 months, Northumbria Police have processed more than 3,000 Clare’s Law applications – and officers continue to safeguard as many people as possible.

Detective Chief Superintendent Lyn Peart, who leads the Force’s Safeguarding Department, has urged people to come forward and use the scheme in the lead up to Christmas.  She said: “Clare’s Law is there to protect people – it’s that simple. It’s a truly inclusive service which can be used by anyone. It’s there for you.


“Unfortunately, we tend to see a rise in reports of domestic abuse during the festive period, and we take any opportunity we can to remind the public about schemes in place to protect them.


“I would encourage anyone who has concerns about their own relationship or the partner of a friend or family member to make an application under Clare’s Law.


“You can then discuss any information shared as part of the scheme with a professional and dedicated officer who will listen to your concerns and help put the necessary safeguarding measures in place.


“As a Force, our ultimate aim is to protect vulnerable members of our communities, and this is just one way we can help empower people and help them make those crucial, life-changing decisions.” 


Anyone wishing to submit a Clare’s Law application can do this via the Northumbria Police website at: Request information under Clare's Law: Make a Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) application | Northumbria Police

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Michelle George
(Northumbria Police, Community Engagement Officer, Community Engagement - Southern)

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