Annual Report by DVDRC: Recommendations to reduce Future Domestic Violence in Ontario

The 2010 Annual Report by the Domestic Violence Death Review Committee (DVDRC) by the Office of the Chief Coroner for Ontario has revealed that there were 18 cases involving 36 deaths were reviewed resulting in 14 new recommendations last year.

The DVDRC was established in 2003 by the Office of the Chief Coroner to investigate and review deaths involving domestic violence, and to make recommendations aimed at reducing domestic violence and the number of deaths. Since its beginning, the DVDRC has reviewed 111 cases that involved 178 deaths. A careful estimate has told that there are approximately 20-30 cases of domestic homicide every year in Ontario.

However, the statistics of 2010 annual report has shed light that majority of recommendations are aimed at educating professionals and the general public on specific issues. Issues like how the victims may communicate their separations from partners in a safer way, the increased danger from the persons that create issues and have a history of domestic violence, and awareness around firearms in the home, especially when tension is prevailing in the house.

After careful review of all the cases reported in 2010, the results show that the common themes include:

  • Domestic violence and its effect on the job environment
  • The abusive use of information and communication technologies to harass or stalk victims
  • Increased risks to victim’s well being while calling off a relationship. 

Chair of the Domestic Violence Death Review Committee, Dr. William Lucas said, “By sharing the recommendations generated by the Domestic Violence Death Review Committee with the general public and the justice community, we can collectively work towards addressing recurring issues and trends with a goal to reducing domestic violence in the province.”

The idea behind uncovering the highlights of the report the DVDRC, is to create public awareness regarding the subject matter while openly sharing the lessons learned and issues identified with the goal of collective action towards preventing domestic violence.

Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Jim Bradley said, “The government of Ontario is committed to addressing the issue of domestic violence. The work of the Domestic Violence Death Review Committee is integral to identifying issues and making recommendations towards reducing the occurrence of domestic violence and making Ontario a safer place to live, work and play.”

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