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If you believe there is an immediate risk of harm to someone, or it is an emergency, you should always call 999.
Silent Call For Help (if dialling from a mobile phone) – Dial 999 then 55 – if you are in an emergency when you cannot openly speak or verbally ask for help or give emergency details. After typing 55, you should try and cough, tap the handset or whisper to communicate on an emergency call if possible. Follow link for more information.
Aberdeen’s Violence Against Women Partnership is committed to preventing and eradicating any form of domestic abuse, helping victims and identifying people who may be at risk. Our current Strategy and Action Plan can be found here. We are conscious that the current restrictions in place (due to COVID-19) may lead to an increase in domestic abuse and we want victims to know that although they may feel isolated at the moment, they are certainly not alone.
The message to stay at home does not mean you should not seek support and it is more important than ever that you reach out for help whether it’s for yourself or someone you know. The safety and well-being of anyone at risk of experiencing domestic abuse is a priority for the partnership and we are working to ensure our services remain available and accessible to all.
Some of the main contact numbers are listed below.
*For more information about the national Domestic Abuse Helpline, the Men’s Advice Line (for men who have experienced domestic abuse), and the Respect Phoneline (for perpetrators who want to stop being abusive), click here.
Click on the tabs below for more information about domestic abuse, and services and support which are available.
Domestic abuse includes physical, emotional, financial and sexual abuse by partners or ex-partners. Domestic abuse can happen to people of all genders, and anybody can be an abuser. There are different kinds of abuse, but it is always about having power and control over you. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you might be in an abusive relationship – although this list doesn’t cover everything, and you may be experiencing other issues/ behaviours, too.
Physical abuse – Does your partner ever:
Emotional abuse – Does your partner ever:
Threats and intimidation – Does your partner ever:
Financial abuse – Does your partner ever:
Sexual abuse – Does your partner ever:
If your partner has sex with you when you don’t want to, this is rape.
If you think you may be in an abusive relationship, there are lots of people who can help you. You don’t have to wait for an emergency to seek help, but if it is an emergency call 999. The most important thing to remember is that domestic abuse is not your fault. If domestic abuse is happening to you, it’s important to tell someone and remember you’re not alone.
– National Domestic Violence Freephone Helpline – 0808 2000 247
– Aberdeen Domestic Abuse Team – 01224 538000
– Grampian Women’s Aid – 01224 593381
– Rape Crisis Grampian – 01224 590932.
There are a number of other local and national services which can offer help and support if you are affected by domestic abuse. They are open now to support you, although they may not be providing support face-to-face. Their contact details can be found by clicking here.
Domestic violence disclosure scheme (also known as “Clare’s Law”)
Under this scheme you can ask the police to check whether a new, former or existing partner has a violent past. This is called ‘right to ask’. If records show that you may be at risk of domestic abuse from a partner, the police will consider disclosing the information. A disclosure can be made if it is legal, proportionate and necessary to do so.
The “right to ask” also enables a third party, such as a friend or family member, to apply for a disclosure on behalf of someone they know. Again, the police can release information if it is lawful, necessary and proportionate to do so. In order to make an application under the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme.
Please contact the police. You can do this by:
Once you submit the form you will have formally applied to the Disclosure Scheme for Domestic Abuse Scotland. Police Scotland will process the application – including conducting checks and meeting with you, the applicant. At the end of the process a decision will be made as to whether or not a disclosure will be made.
If you or your children are in immediate danger and need help, call 999.
The most important thing to remember is that domestic abuse is not your fault. If you’re experiencing domestic abuse, you have choices. You can:
If you decide to leave home, try to find somewhere to stay before you go. This could be:
Call Scotland’s Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline on 0800 027 1234 or Shelter Scotland‘s housing helpline on 0808 800 4444 for advice on finding a safe place to stay.
You may be able to make your partner leave your home. This depends on what rights you have to live in your home. Find out more about staying in your home after a separation. If you do not have anywhere permanent to stay (for example if you’re sleeping on the streets, with friends or family for a short time or living in a hostel, refuge or hotel) you can make a homeless application to your local council’s housing department – see Question 2 for contact details.
If your financial situation changes after you leave your partner, you may be worried about how you’ll support yourself or your children on your own. Help with money is available, for example you might be able to claim benefits because you’re now a single person or a crisis grant if you need emergency financial help. See also Question 6 below for further information about financial support.
If you want to prevent your partner coming near your home or behaving in an abusive way towards you, you can take out an interdict against them. This is a court order that bans them from doing certain things. Find out more about taking legal action on the Shelter Scotland website. You may want a divorce or to dissolve your civil partnership if you want your relationship to end permanently. If you need legal advice from a solicitor but cannot afford the fees, you may be able to get legal aid.
Family, friends and neighbours can help support you if you are being abused.
If you are a friend or family member concerned about someone you think is experiencing domestic abuse you can contact any of the organisations above for advice – see Question 2 for link to contact details.
If someone is at immediate risk of harm, please call 999 immediately.
If you’re worried a friend is being abused, let them know you’ve noticed something is wrong. They might not be ready to talk but try to find quiet times when they can talk if they choose to.
If someone confides in you that they’re suffering domestic abuse:
A ‘victims fund’, administered by Victim Support Scotland, can support victims of crime struggling financially. The funding is available for specific costs and items in the aftermath of a crime.
The funding is for the direct purchase or reimbursement of goods and services on behalf of the victim. In most cases, invoices or receipts need to be submitted along with the application to verify the amount claimed and only in exceptional cases will a cash sum be provided to an applicant.
Examples of what the Fund can cover include: emergency household, food, utility or clothing expenses; costs to repair or replace damaged property or goods; contributions to funeral costs; removal costs; travel costs to place of safety or to attend court; or security equipment costs.
Other types of expenditure will be considered if a need is identified.
Who can apply: Applications must be endorsed and submitted by a referral organisation* acting in their professional capacity. [*Referral organisations are support organisations, mostly in the third sector, who victims and their families are in touch with.] Organisations can apply for funding on behalf of victims, but payments will not be made directly to these organisations.
Funding is open to any victim of crime who is resident in Scotland who is currently accessing victim and other support services. It is also available for people who live outside of Scotland who have been bereaved by a crime that has occurred within Scotland.
Additional eligibility requirements:
How much can be applied for: Individuals will be able to access assistance worth up to £3,000 to help meet immediate financial needs.
Timescales: Funding available from 1st April 2020.
How to apply: Complete application form, and email it to:
More information and the link to the application form can be found at: https://victimsupport.scot/victims-fund/
For any queries about the fund, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aberdeen local Contact: email@example.com
You may be able to access funds if you have support from a service / practitioner.