We all took the view that public sympathy is with the women who are in effect sentenced to the equivalent of a death penalty whilst their children suffer the consequences. When they ask me - where were you Mummy when all these women were dying in prison, I will be proud to say I was at the HLE Debate and we didn't just talk about change we made it happen.
What is the point of creating new laws when the ones we already have are not being used effectively? A law is only as good as its implementation. It is already possible to prosecute non-physical forms of abuse - including psychiatric injury, threats, stalking and harassment. We need to get the basics right first... I agree that the law needs to be strengthened - but not by criminalising coercive control. Instead, the government needs to abandon its gender-neutral approach to tackling domestic violence and start addressing violence against women for what it truly is - a deeply gendered crime.
Changing the law cannot be a substitute for improving the police response. However, legislative change signals training and awareness and can drive culture change to better protect women and children, hold perpetrators to account and effectively lead to a reduction in murder. And police, prosecutors and courts must have the best possible tools to do their job and keep victims and their children safe.
New research from Plan shows the shocking truth about adolescent girls in developing countries. In one of the largest studies ever undertaken of its kind, we talked to 7000 adolescent girls and boys in 11 countries about girls' opportunities. The findings are overwhelming. These girls are some of the most disadvantaged people on earth.
Statistically, by far the most dangerous time in an abusive relationship and when a women and her children are most likely to be killed is when she seeks help. It is crucial that she is able to leave her home and find a confidential place of safety away from the perpetrator. Without that women will be forced to return to the perpetrator just to ensure that she and her children are not homeless.
I am particularly worried about the justice gap and the lack of action when it comes to violence against women. Not only have prosecutions and convictions fallen at a time when reported crimes are going up, there is a growing use of community resolutions which are just inappropriate for serious crimes. Much as the Home Office like to tell us this is OK, it isn't.
Violence against women and children by men is important but it is not the whole story. It is important for victims or survivors of LGBT domestic abuse to know that they are not alone, that help and advice is available and that they do not need to put up with an abusive relationship. Many people think support for victims of domestic violence is only available to women who suffer at the hands of an abusive male partner but that is not the case. Many people are unaware that they can be safe, they can be supported and that there is a route out of an abusive same-sex relationship.