Domestic abuse soars when England lose. This Euros, we need change (2024)

Domestic abuse soars when England lose. This Euros, we need change (1) Opinion

Women's Aid is calling for more awareness around how domestic abuse increases when England play during major football tournaments such as the Euros

by: Teresa Parker

30 Jun 2024


For many of us the Euros this year mean will summer evenings watching games on the big screen with our friends, holding on to hope and enjoying the excitement of the tournament. However, for those living in fear of domestic abuse at home, the reality of a major football tournament is that it is a time where existing abuse can get worse.

While we know that football does not cause domestic abuse, major championships can make existing abuse more frequent or severe. A study by Lancaster University showed reports of domestic abuse increased by 38% when England lost a match and 26% when they won or drew.

We need more research to better understand the link between domestic abuse and football, but generally, it is thought that the higher consumption of alcohol during this time, as well as the heightened emotions and potentially the social dynamics of some large groups of men in groups supporting the men’s game and acceptance of so called “laddish behaviour” (which can include sexism), can contribute to the rise in cases.

  • Male domestic abuse survivor who almost ‘gave up’ wants others to know help is out there
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While these might be catalysts, it’s also important to acknowledge that many people watch football, drink alcohol and spend time with big groups of their friends and would never be abusive – the only person responsible for abuse in a relationship is the abuser.

Domestic abuse happens everyday across our society – one in four women will be affected by it at some point in their lives, and at least one woman a week is killed by a current or former partner. Despite how prevalent it is, domestic abuse is thought of as a ‘hidden’ crime, as it predominantly happens inside the home.

This year, to coincide with the Euros, and with the brilliant people at House 337, we have launched our ‘No More Years of Hurt’ campaign to raise awareness of domestic abuse during this crucial time, so that survivors know where they can turn to for help and so that the public knows how they can support charities like Women’s Aid.

‘No More Years of Hurt’ builds on the success of our ‘He’s Coming Home’ campaign during the 2022 World Cup. The campaign was hugely impactful, cutting through the noise and reaching so many people to start important conversations, creating awareness of domestic abuse as an issue.

Domestic abuse soars when England lose. This Euros, we need change (3)

This year, coming on the cusp of a general election, with terrifying levels of violence against women and funding for women’s services desperately needed, the campaign aims to mobilise the public and move this issue further up the agenda to make domestic abuse intolerable in our society.

Our campaign features classic footballscarves imprinted with well-known football chants that have been subverted to highlight the domestic abuse emergency, such as: “No More Years of Hurt,” “He’s Coming Home,” and “England Till I Die.”

In addition to the slogans, thescarves are also interwoven phrases that show controlling behaviour. The words are not immediately noticeable but become clearer and more recognisable the longer you look, reflecting how domestic abuse in our society is hiding in plain sight.

Football championships are without a doubt an exciting time, that should be enjoyable for everyone. But as we come together in the hope that football is coming home this year, we must also come together to raise awareness of domestic abuse and support the charities helping survivors, it really can make the world of difference.

Teresa Parker is head of media at Women’s Aid.

If you or a friend need support, go to for links both to direct support and to be connected to a network of local services around the country. If you’d like to donate to the campaign and help Women’s Aid provide lifesaving services, please visit our Women’s Aid Euro Fundraiser 2024. Go Fund Me will generously be matching the first £5,000 donated, so your donation could go even further.

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Domestic abuse soars when England lose. This Euros, we need change (2024)


How much does domestic abuse cost the UK economy? ›

It is high volume; affecting 2.4 million adults every year. It is high harm; one in five homicides is a domestic homicide. And it is high cost; the social and economic costs of domestic abuse are estimated to be in the region of £78 billion (2022/23 prices) over a three-year average period of abuse.

Is domestic violence a problem in the UK? ›

1.5 million. The police recorded 1,500,369 domestic abuse-related incidents and crimes in England and Wales in the year ending March 2022. The number of domestic abuse-related crimes increased 7.7% compared to the previous year.

How does domestic abuse affect the world? ›

Its effects echo throughout communities, impacting everyone from children to local businesses and even influencing future generations. It can be valuable to explore these wide-ranging consequences, from economic setbacks to the mental health crisis, while highlighting hopeful new mental health treatment developments.

When did domestic abuse become a crime in the UK? ›

The public pressure that surmounted from these protests for women's rights caused the UK to produce its first piece of legislation tackling domestic violence: the Domestic Violence and Matrimonial Proceedings Act 1976 which created civil protection orders for victims.

What country has the highest rate of domestic abuse? ›

A UN report compiled from a number of different studies conducted in at least 71 countries found domestic violence against women to be most prevalent in Ethiopia. Up to two-thirds of women in certain communities in Nigeria's Lagos State say they are victims to domestic violence.

How much does domestic violence cost the US? ›

Economic Impact of Domestic Violence

The cost of intimate partner violence exceeds $8.3 billion per year in the United States (the CDC in the same year estimated $6 billion, others estimated it to be even higher). Calculated in 2023 dollars, with the CPI Inflation Calculator, the number is $13,878,637.50.

What type of abuse is most common in the UK? ›

Neglect is the most commonly mentioned form of abuse by adults contacting the NSPCC helpline.

Is domestic violence a problem in the US? ›

General domestic violence statistics. An average of 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States — more than 12 million women and men over the course of a single year.

Is there a link between poverty and domestic violence in the UK? ›

Key findings

Mums in the lowest income group also experienced more types of abuse (physical violence, sexual abuse and coercive control) and more often, compared to those on the highest incomes (13% compared to 3%). l Younger mums were more likely to report domestic abuse.

Who initiates domestic violence more? ›

Studies of married couples show similar results with domestic violence being initiated as follows: 25% by male. 25% by female. The other 50% mutually.

Where does abuse happen the most? ›

Abuse mainly occurs within the close social environment

This includes relatives, friends and family acquaintances or even employees in educational, leisure and sport facilities. Children and adolescents suffer sexual violence within their nuclear family in most cases.

Who is most likely to be affected by domestic abuse? ›

Women are most likely to be victims of abuse and perpetrators are most likely to be men. Children are often the hidden victims of domestic violence and abuse.

Is domestic abuse common in England? ›

(aged 16+) in England and Wales have experienced domestic abuse since the age of 16. This equates to a prevalence rate of approximately 22 in 100 adults.

When did beating your wife become illegal in the US? ›

Although wife beating was formally illegal in all U.S. states by 1920, it was not until the 1970s that efforts by the women's movement to recast DV as a public concern began to succeed.”); Melissa Murray, Strange Bedfellows: Criminal Law, Family Law, and the Legal Construction of Intimate Life, 94 IOWA L. REV.

When did it become illegal to hit your wife in the UK? ›

In 1878, the Matrimonial Causes Act finally made it possible for a woman to seek legal separation from an abusive husband, and in 1891 the right to use corporal punishment on a wife was removed.

How much does drug abuse cost the UK economy each year? ›

Each year in the UK, drugs cost society £10.7 billion in policing, healthcare and crime, with drug-fuelled theft alone costing £6 billion a year. Research shows that for every £1 spent on treatment, an estimated £2.50 is saved.

How does domestic violence affect the economy? ›

The cost of intimate partner violence exceeds $8.3 billion per year in the United States. Survivors of intimate partner violence lose a total of 8.0 million days of paid work each year. Between 21-60% of survivors of intimate partner violence lose their jobs due to reasons stemming from the abuse.

How much does crime cost the UK economy? ›

Economic Crime is a threat to the security and prosperity of the UK, with an estimated cost to the UK of at least £8.4 billion each year [footnote 5].

What is the economic cost of pain UK? ›

An estimated 28 million adults in the UK are affected by chronic pain, which is often called an invisible illness. According to the Office for National Statistics, 23.4 million working days were lost to the UK economy in 2022 due to musculoskeletal conditions, the most common form of chronic pain.


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