New Cambs abuse unit had more than 4,000 cases in first five months

A DOMESTIC abuse unit has dealt with more than 4,000 cases since it was launched five months ago.

The Multi-Agency Referral Unit (MARU), made up of representatives from the police, Cambridgeshire County Council, Peterborough City Council and health and probation services, was set up in April to help victims of domestic, child and adult abuse.

The child protection team has dealt with 2,339 referrals, the domestic violence desk worked on 1,283 high and medium risk cases between April and July, and the vulnerable adult desk had 573 referrals.

Detective Superintendent Simon Megicks said: “The MARU was established to cut bureaucracy and be more efficient with our resources, while improving the service for vulnerable people.

“By working together in one location we can share information, specialist skills and provide a much more integrated service in protecting the abused and vulnerable.

“It means there is a clear cross-over of safeguarding needs, and the teams work together to problem solve where the issues within families are complex. There can be cases which will need the expertise of all parts of the MARU, for example a vulnerable adult who is a parent and also in an abusive relationship. We seek to find the most appropriate response to the needs.”

Cambridgeshire County Council deputy leader and Cabinet member for Community Engagement, Councillor Mac McGuire, said: “By co-locating these services it will enable all the agencies involved to share their experience and expertise, offer a better and more responsive service to protect the public of all age ranges. As well as making the best use of the resources available to us to ensure we meet the needs of the Cambridgeshire community.”