MASIP Programme

April 11, 2019


Way back in 2005, I learnt about the creation of the Fixated Threat Assessment Centre [FTAC] in London which was pioneering a new way of working and looking at potential stalkers and threats to members of the Royal Family and of Government. It was members of the criminal justice system and health service working together to help manage risk of individuals to VIPs.

I was very keen to see this service for ‘the masses’ as it was actually tackling the problem and trying to minimise the impact on an individual.

At one point I chaired a meeting with members of FTAC and the ACPO Lead at the time, with the Home Office hosting, to ask FTAC to educate ACPO on their work and understand that this is what was needed for us all.

A number of years later the Hampshire Clinic came to fruition and then Cheshire’s project. I am so proud to have worked with members of both and look forward to seeing them develop along with other areas where the vital work can be replicated, stalking impact can be better understood, risk management more effective, the impact on the victim be reduced and ultimately lives will be saved.

For more details, click here : MASIP Programme


There are still so many myths surrounding stalking, stalkers and victims. Sadly, because of these myths, many signs are missed, many victims not taken seriously and many stalkers that are allowed to escalate their behaviour.

It is VITAL that as soon as a stalker exhibits obsessive behaviour, he or she is dealt with appropriately via criminal justice or health. The sooner the intervention, the more chance it has of stopping.

Sadly, many cases involve physical violence and it’s at that point it starts getting taken seriously. Remarkably, I still hear of cases where victims are told “come back when he/she has physically attacked you”. What is there not to get with laws and so much information around these days?

I know I, and many victims subject to psychological torture, have wished for a physical act of violence just to get it over with and to show there is damage being done. The constant, drip-drip effect that can go on for years of not knowing if you’re going to be killed today has a huge impact. You can’t have bandages around your mind, yet damage is prevalent.

Sadly, there are too many victims being physically assaulted and sometimes murdered because, maybe, it was felt that stalking is just a benign ‘nuisance’ crime.


The impact of stalking on a victim is huge; anxiety, depression, PTSD to name a few and some victims are driven to suicide by the relentless terror. It is not always ex-partners who are the perpetrators.

There doesn’t have to be any physical violence to have an impact – a common myth. As I mentioned in a previous post, I had to fight to get treatment, in fact, to get assessed! I was then diagnosed with severe PTSD amongst other things.

This should not be the case.

From research I did with the University of Leicester in 2005 (when I set up a Stalking Awareness Month aligned with the US), we found that an AVERAGE of 21 people around the primary victim were affected by the stalker. How much damage is being done? And what resources are there to help?

Link here for the conference details – happening today!

National Stalking Awareness Week Conference


There can be no doubt that stalking has a huge impact on the mental and physical health of the victim.

My case was the test case for Grievous Bodily Harm (Psychiatric Injury) in 1996. It was the first time it was acknowledged that stalking had an impact on my health, despite starting in 1992, even though my stalker had not physically attacked me.

12 months previously, we had been in court with the same charge, which failed. It was felt that it was my emotional state of mind that was the problem! He literally walked out of court behind us, a free man. However, the stalking never stopped and so the Judge in March 1996 felt that there was evidence that, despite being told his harassment was having an impact on my life, he continued. My stalker had written a letter to me outlining what I was having to do; look from the porch to check for him, check the letterbox, and so on… The letter was read out in court and proved he knew what he was doing; trying to destroy me psychologically.

Once that test case was successful, people asked why I was campaigning for a specific stalking law. My answer was that, it should not be that a victim has to become damaged psychologically before a charge can be brought. Hence we campaigned and got the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, then an amended version in 2012 after a Parliamentary Inquiry when the word ‘stalking’ became a legal term rather than a colloquial one for harassment, which was causing confusion.  Serious cases, like mine and others were put in the same category as a hedge dispute which is why we really needed it separating; this was about murder prevention.

Despite being under a psychiatrist for the case, it wasn’t until 2010, whilst having counselling locally, researching it myself and asking my GP to refer me, that I was eventually diagnosed with severe PTSD, severe anxiety and moderate depression.

There is still so much work to do though, it was a fight to get treatment, even an assessment; initially I was told that, despite being the test case for psychological GBH, I was ‘not appropriate’ for the Traumatic Stress Service. Eventually they allowed me to have treatment.

Whilst on the Home Office Victims Advisory Panel 2003-2006, it was difficult to engage the Department of Health in understanding that victims of crime are damaged and need support.  I really hope things are improving.

If you work in the health sector, please spread the word and help your colleagues understand that it is vital for victims get the help they need – reduce the damage psychological and physical and, ultimately, save lives.

Lots of awareness raising is about educating those who need it, however we are all aware of those in and around the criminal justice system who already know how serious stalking is and who are already heroes to the victims they are trying to protect. Sometimes is it the system that lets them down, the system that needs changing.

To those who know and who are already doing their best: THANK YOU 

Today is the start of a new week, National Stalking Awareness Week 2017 is over.

Despite this, it is still vital that we continue to push the message at every opportunity that stalking is a serious crime with the potential to end in tragedy. Some of us have known this for years yet our voices not loud enough to change attitudes. Changing laws has been relatively much easier!

We still have a long way to go in educating those who need it on the fact that anyone not taking a victim seriously – be it police, CPS, courts, prison or probation – has the potential to leave them with the prospect of an inquest and inquiry. It goes without saying that the victim will be already suffering psychologically from the terror of being stalked.

It is vital that a victim is taken seriously from that first report.  They are already feeling paranoid, stupid and are minimising what is happening to try to rationalise it.   It is likely the stalking has been happening for a while.

If a victim is asking for help, go back to basics, look at the evidence and behaviour of the alleged perpetrator; are these actions from a reasonable person? Or are they someone who seems obsessed, is their life preoccupied with their victim? Use those checklists and trust your instinct – do not just rely on a list of tick boxes.

Join the dots…put the acts together, don’t separate out 3 acts of criminal damage, breach of the peace etc… join them together to prove a course of conduct.

Let’s start looking at stalking as a prelude to murder, we have come so far since I first went public in 1995, but we still have a long way to go. Back then I was virtually a lone voice, now there are many other voices joining the chorus and doing amazing work.  Please let’s continue in harmony so that our voices can be heard and lives saved.