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Social Policy and Federal Representative - Essay Example

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SOCIAL Introduction and Theory Historically until the feminist movement came to the fore, women had little protection from their male cohabitating partners. Women had few rights and implicitly, if not explicitly, they were not regarded as equal to their male partners…
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Download file to see previous pages Also while not excusing murder, some judges have allowed crime of passion defenses to reduce the crime to manslaughter on the theory that a husband who discovers his wife’s infidelity may be unable to control his reaction. Thus police were reluctant to get involved in domestic altercations and lay charges as they would in the case of public assaults. In fact until 10 years ago in some states they were forbidden to do so unless they actually witnessed the offence. Fortunately the feminist revolution has radically changed this mindset with many states requiring the arrest of one or both parties, although some allow no arrest if the officer files a report justifying his non arrest. Finally, our culture and laws are promoting more equal gender treatment. Definition While recognizing that verbal abuse, especially if it is repeated over a long period of time, cab cause severe lack of self esteem and other psychological damage to female partners, it is usually beyond the purview of the law because it is much more difficult to prove than physical injury.(Domestic) While psychologists and psychiatrists may offer their professional opinions, they may differ from each other. Also there are no scares or emergency room medical reports as there usually are for physical injuries. In such cases it may only be necessary to prove the injuries were inflicted by the cohabitating partner. Therefore, definitions in state or federal statutes usually don’t include mental abuse but confine themselves to actual or threatened physical injury, or terrorist threats or criminal sexual misconduct, although obviously the threat of physical violence may be more difficult to prove than actual. The parties involved need not be married or even be of the same gender for domestic violence legislation to be applicable. However they do have to be cohabitating in the same residence or did so in the past or have had a child together. State and Federal Legislation In the past state have had primary jurisdiction in the field of domestic abuse legislation. However, recently Congress has enacted legislation because of the increasing mobility of society and therefore the potential for perpetrators to cross state lines to commit their crimes against their partners. States vary somewhat in their legislation, although police officers in all states can now arrest someone they suspect has committed a domestic assault without having witnessed the event.(State) They do however vary in that 3 states require an arrest if they are called to investigate an incident whereas the others don’t if they file a report explaining why they did not arrest. Most states and the federal legislation have similar definitions of domestic violence as that noted above. At one time forced sex by a man on his female cohabitating partner was not considered criminal sexual conduct or rape because this was regarded as his prerogative, but fortunately this has changed. An arrest usually requires some or all of the following conditions, a probable cause, suspect and victim fit the definition of a domestic relationship (cohabitation), alleged act fits definition of domestic assault ( actual or threatened physical violence), reason to believe domestic abuse will continue if suspect not arrested or evidence of injury and incident reported within 28 days of occurrence. The 2 main acts of federal legislation are the Violence against Women Act (VAWA) originally enacted in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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