We were delighted to welcome London’s Victim’s Commissioner, Claire Waxman, to the National Stalking Helpline yesterday. The visit was an opportunity for the Commissioner to visit the National Stalking Helpline, discuss our work with victims of stalking, and to support our work to improve recognition and response to this crime in London.

Through her own experience and long relationship with charity, the Commissioner has shown great sympathy and insight into stalking. We are grateful for the support the Commissioner has given Suzy Lamplugh Trust and the work we have collaborated on.

Stalking Protection Orders

The Commissioner visited us during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, and gave her support to our campaign for the Stalking Protection Bill which is due to have its second reading in January.

The Bill will introduce Stalking Protection Orders (SPOs) to improve stalking victims’ safety. The Orders will give police the authority to apply for an Order and reduce the danger that perpetrators pose to victims while they gather more evidence. When an SPO is granted, the intention is for it to restrict perpetrators and manage patterns of behaviours, for example restricting them from contacting or getting to close to their victim, or requiring them to attend rehabilitation programmes to help prevent reoffending.

Speaking about her support for the Bill, the Commissioner agreed there was a need for specialist training to be provided to criminal justice professionals alongside the Orders to ensure they are used properly. The Orders should not replace robust investigation and legislation, but improve support and protection and victims while cases are ongoing.

Commenting on the visit, Claire Waxman said:

“I support the Stalking Protection Bill because victims [of stalking] deserve access to support and early intervention [services].

“This work is absolutely vital as we strive to develop a more effective response to stalking by breaking the cycle of abuse to reduce reoffending and providing victims with the support they need to feel safe, cope and recover.

“Having been a victim of stalking myself, I know only too well how dramatically victims can be failed by our criminal justice system and early intervention and robust investigation of these crimes are essential.

“Whether it is stalking, harassment, harmful practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM) , forced marriage, upskirting, revenge porn and illicit livestreaming - every victim deserves the best possible response and support. We are determined to do everything we can to root out violence against women and girls and improve services to tackle the problem and better protect victims across the capital.”

Click here to download our Stalking Protection Order email template and fill in your details to ask your MP to support the Stalking Protection Bill.