Truss vows to outlaw catcalling and wolf-whistling as part of crackdown on misogyny

27 July 2022, 14:03 | Updated: 27 July 2022, 15:04

Liz Truss has outlined plans to crackdown on violence against women and girls
Liz Truss has outlined plans to crackdown on violence against women and girls. Picture: Getty/Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

Tory leadership hopeful Liz Truss has vowed to outlaw catcalling and wolf-whistling if she becomes prime minister, as part of a crackdown on misogyny in public places.

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The foreign secretary says she will introduce a standalone offence to criminalise street harassment in order to tackle violence against women and girls.

She also promised to introduce a national domestic abuse register, saying it is the responsibility of all political leaders to "do more".

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She said that over the last two years the nation has been "shocked" by the number of high profile murders of women, many in London.

The register she wants to introduce would include coercive and controlling behaviour and financial abuse.

She says it would break the cycle of repeat offending.

Her Government would also require convicted offenders to inform the police of arrangements with new partners and their children, and failure to do so would lead to harsh penalties.

The Foreign Secretary said: "Over the last two years, our nation has been shocked by a number of high profile murders of women, many here in London.

"It is the responsibility of all political leaders, including us in Westminster and the Mayor of London, to do more.

"Violence against women and girls doesn't have to be inevitable.

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"Women should be able to walk the streets without fear of harm, and perpetrators must expect to be punished.

"Through increased police training, new offences, faster processes for rape victims and our domestic abuse register we will ensure victims are protected, and crimes are prevented in the first place."

As part of her crackdown, which builds on the Government's Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy, the Foreign Secretary also pledged to accelerate the process for handling rape cases.

She would ensure cases are able to reach investigatory standards from the start to allow quicker progress through the courts.

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In order to be able to respond effectively to vulnerable victims, police officers would also receive specific training.

Conservative former Home Office minister Rachel Maclean said: "Women and girls should be free to live their lives in safety and I know as prime minister Liz will deliver tougher safeguards for domestic abuse victims, including tagging for the most violent offenders."