Acid attacks cost society at least £300m over 6 years

Acid attacks cost society at least £300m over 6 years

The terrible human cost of acid attacks is well-known, but what is less clear is the economic cost to UK society. Frontier has produced an economic impact assessment of acid attacks in the UK for Acid Survivors Trust International (A.S.T.I.), taking wider societal costs into consideration, including costs to the criminal justice system, the NHS, and the victims themselves.

Key findings include:

  • The number of attacks has increased significantly in the last three years. A total of 949 acid attacks were reported in 2017.
  • The estimated cost to society per attack is at least £63,000.
  • The total cost of acid attacks to society in 2017 was therefore approximately £60m (£30m in London alone).
  • Even if the number of acid attacks remains constant at 2017 levels, the total cumulative cost to society is likely to be over £300m across the period 2015-2020.

A.S.T.I. executive director Jaf Shah said: “As well as making a moral case for intervention, Frontier’s work allows us to evidence the immense costs of such attacks on society. The analysis provides us with an economic argument for a long-term and integrated approach that can lead to the end of acid attacks.”

Our analysis is based on public data, and is probably a conservative estimate of the cost of acid attacks to UK society due to the difficulty of capturing the full costs of such attacks with the data available. We hope this will stimulate further work to fill the data gaps and provide understanding of the full consequences of this crime.

The methodology and a summary of key findings are available for download here.

Frontier regularly collaborates with charities and charitable organisations in the UK and all over the world.

For more information please contact, or call +44 (0)20 7031 7000



Economic impact of acid attacks in the UK Frontier