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  • Author or Editor: Nicola Sharp-Jeffs x
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The term ‘economic abuse’ was first introduced into discourse when it was identified as a tactic used by perpetrators within the Duluth Power and Control Wheel. Yet it is only recently that researchers have turned their attention to defining and understanding it. This article draws on a review of the global and UK specific academic research literature to assess the suitability of the definition of economic abuse put forward within the Westminster government’s Domestic Abuse Bill. It recommends that a) the term ‘any behaviour’ within the definition is understood to include controlling tactics which sit under the constructs of economic restriction, exploitation and/or sabotage, b) the definition recognises perpetrators will also prevent a partner from using/maintaining goods or services and, c) attention is given to the suggestion that single incidents of economic abuse would not fall under this definition. While the focus of this article is on Westminster policy in the UK, the case for ‘naming’ and defining economic abuse in statute has wider resonance, not least because it provides a framework within which to report on prevalence, hold perpetrators accountable and for services (statutory and voluntary) to respond.

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