In financial year 2021/2022, offenders paid £312,742 into the SNP Government’s Victim Surcharge Fund, allowing the first funding round to distribute £157,000 amongst five victim support organisations in Scotland in that year.
Victim Support Scotland received £120,000. The other funds were allocated to Families Affected by Murder and Suicide (FAMS); People Experiencing Trauma And Loss (PETAL); The Manda Centre; and The Moira Fund.
Another £256,727 has been allocated to six organisations meeting the criteria in the 2022/23 round.
The victim surcharge came into force in Scotland on 25 November 2019 and applies to all persons who commit an offence on or after that date who are subsequently convicted and receive a court fine.
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“It is only right that those who choose to perpetrate experience that their crimes have consequences – victims and their families already do.
“This Victim Surcharge Fund is helping to provide joined-up, accessible support to victims across North Ayrshire and Scotland. It helps provide victims with specialist services for those bereaved, court advocacy, assistance for victims of human trafficking and better long-term outcomes, including improved mental and physical health.
“The fund also covers costs for emergency accommodation, food and clothing to victims when they need it most.”
The surcharge is collected from offenders by the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service, in the same way it collects fines and compensation orders. The surcharge is then transferred to the Victim Surcharge Fund (the Fund) which is administered by the SNP Government and decided on by civil servants, following a robust decision-making process.
The Fund was opened for the second time to applications from organisations that provide support to victims of crime in December 2021. The deadline for applications to the Fund was 14 January 2022. The third round will open for applications this winter.