The Drive Partnership have shared their newly published research paper: Suicide rates in high-risk, high-harm perpetrators of domestic abuse in England and Wales: a cohort study to be published in Crisis: Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention.
This research, conducted in collaboration between the Drive Partnership and Dr. Duleeka Knipe’s team at the University of Bristol, indicates that the suicide rate among a specific group of domestic abuse perpetrators who are at high risk of causing harm is notably higher than in many other high-risk groups.
The Drive Partnership stated that “improving mental health and outcomes is imperative to reduce the suicide deaths in this group and, therefore reduce the impact such deaths can have on the adult and child victims of abuse”.
The study emphasizes that individuals perpetrating domestic abuse can use the threat of suicide as a means of coercive control, which can deter efforts to address their suicidal tendencies.
Prior research has established that domestic abuse perpetrators have a high prevalence of mental illness and a heightened likelihood of experiencing childhood trauma compared to the general population.
Both of these factors are recognized as significant risk factors for suicide and suicidal thoughts. However, the specific suicide rate among domestic abuse perpetrators in the UK is currently unknown.
The Drive Partnership have been actively engaged in research, practice, and policy efforts to advocate for further investigation into the risk of suicide and suicidal thoughts among all domestic abuse perpetrators.
They also emphasize the importance of developing more effective personalized safety plans as a crucial protective measure. These initiatives include the development of practical guidance for frontline practitioners involved in the Drive Project and the sharing of evidence to contribute to the formation of the Government’s National Suicide Prevention Strategy.
This work is part of the broader National Systems Change initiative, where they identify systemic gaps and collaborate with survivors, service users, practitioners, specialized organizations, researchers, and policymakers to formulate solutions.
Access the paper here.