For a VoteTopic on domestic abuse in early 2020, we asked Primary pupils: “Do young people know what an unhealthy relationship looks like?”, and Secondary students: “Do young people know the signs of an abusive relationship?”
We were fortunate enough to receive feedback on this from The Children's Society, who highlighted the significance of the results for both their own work and for improving young people's understanding of abusive relationships in general. They expressed their interest in the result as "there is a big difference in the number of young people who know what an unhealthy relationship looks like around the country. There is also a big difference in what children in Primary school said and what young people in Secondary school said – we were surprised by this difference which makes what you have told us even more helpful!"
In their response, they also outlined three key aims for the insights voters had provided:
- We want to see the law changed to make the support for young people who experience abuse in their own relationships better.
- We will write a report and include what we have learnt from you – the report will go on our website, on our social media and might be covered in the news.
- We will speak to MPs in Parliament and ask them to support in making this change.
Not only this, but we have since been advised that they will be putting down an oral question in the House of Lords based on the response from the topic.
We look forward to working with The Children's Society again in the not-too-distant future and will continue to share our vote results with them in the hope that it will help inform their vital work.