We are excited to announce our first national conference, “Raising the Bar: best practice in stalking cases” on June 29. Four years on from our launch in the House of Lords following the successful stalking law reform campaign we are delighted to share our learning, knowledge and best practice through our analysis and assessment of more than 2000 cases, reviews of stalking related murders and our pioneering team of specialist Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworkers (ISACs), as the only national stalking advocacy service in the world.

At least five million people are stalked each year (British Crime Survey, 2006). At least 700, 000 women are victims of stalking (Crime Survey of England & Wales, 2011/12). Alarmingly only 1% of stalking cases are being recorded by police (National Stalking Consortium, 2016) and 1% of cases result in a charge and prosecution for stalking (Paladin, 2015).

We wrote to the HMIC and submitted our evidence as to why an Inspection into stalking was urgently required. We are pleased this is now underway. The link to murder and serious harm is important as we know that perpetrators who engage in stalking behaviours follow a path that can ultimately lead to murder. 1 in 2 domestic violence stalkers, who make a threat will act on it. 1 in 10 of all stalkers, if they make a threat will act on it (Mckenzie, McEwan, Pathé, James, Olgoff 2009).

Oftentimes the behaviours are not identified, victims are not believed, risks are not understood and cases escalate to serious harm and murder. Our roll call of stalking related murders include Shana Grice in Sussex, Alice Ruggles in Northumbria and Zoe Morgan in South Wales as well as the attempted murder of Zoe Dronfield in the West Midlands.

Laura Richards, Founder and Director or Paladin said: “Unfortunately, these murders are not isolated incidents and could have happened in any police force area. It’s vital the lessons are learned and change happens on the front line. Paladin is at the forefront of best practice and it’s important for police, the crown prosecution service, domestic violence services and all agencies to attend this conference and hear firsthand from leading experts to create change that lasts to better protect victims of stalking”.

Confirmed speakers include: Brian Altman, QC Former First Senior Treasury Counsel and lead prosecutor in the Milly Dowler case; Zoe Dronfield, Baroness Royall of Blaisdon; Laura Richards Founder and Director of Paladin, Dr Eleanor Aston; Vera Baird DBE QC PCC Northumbria; Sharon Stratton, College of Policing; Alison Roberts ISAC, Rachel Horman, Family Law Solicitor and Chair of Paladin; John Trott former DCI and Devon and Cornwall SPOC and Mandy Banks, Sentencing Review Panel.

For more information: www.paladinservice.co.uk/conferences

To book a place: https://raisingthebarpaladin.eventbrite.co.uk

For media inquires contact Fergus Bird: 07754 321277