My amendment to extend the limit will send a clear message to abusers: they cannot commit these crimes with impunity
- Yvette Cooper is the Labour MP for Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford
Sarah was attacked by her partner while she was pregnant. She went to A&E but was afraid to talk about what had happened. After her baby was born, Sarah gathered the courage to leave and talk to the police. But before long, officers told her it was too late – she had passed a legal time limit she never knew existed, and her ex would not be charged. Sarah was badly abused by her partner but she was also badly let down by the law. Today, MPs have the chance to change this to prevent victims from being denied justice or protection. We need to seize it.
The problem for Sarah – and for thousands of domestic abuse victims and survivors across the country – is that there is a six-month limit on prosecuting common assault. So where victims need time to be able to report, there is a real risk they will be timed out, won’t get justice, and nothing will be done about the abuser who is free to hurt again.