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BME Services


We explore the issues which are concerns for BME women suffering domestic abuse. Our experienced multi lingual staff will address the additional barriers, including; language (written and spoken), no recourse to public funds, immigration control, perpetrators disguising oppression as cultural norms, lack of awareness that domestic abuse is a crime.


Immigration Issues:

No Recourse to Public Funds?

As a result of their immigration status some women may be affected by a ‘no recourse to public funds’ restriction. This restriction requires that they be financially supported by their partner or that they support themselves by working; they are not entitled to any benefits except contribution-based job seekers allowance. This can often create problems for women who want to leave their partner because of domestic abuse, as they are often left with nothing if they leave the household. ‘No recourse to public funds’ results in children also suffering because it prevents women, who leave an abusive partner, from accessing housing or benefits or refuge provision. When women are here on a spousal/partner visa they have ‘no recourse to public funds’ for the first two years, after which time they are eligible to apply for ‘Indefinite Leave To Remain’ in their own right. There are several other types of immigration status where women have either no recourse, or limited recourse to public funds.


If, because of your status, you have ‘no recourse to public funds’ then Liverpool Domestic Abuse Service can support you and apply on your behalf for a special scheme to assist you. If you are successful you will be able to stay at a refuge and be provided with financial assistance for you and your children for a maximum of eight weeks. This is designed to give you, with help, the time to apply to the UK Border Agency to change your status to ‘Indefinite Leave To Remain’ under the special domestic violence rules.