Today, on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women (25 November), the SNP Government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) published Equally Safe Progress Report on helping protect women and girls from violence.
Equally Safe is a joint SNP Government and COSLA strategy to prevent and eradicate violence against women and girls in Scotland.
Equalities Minister Christina McKelvie MSP said:
“As we mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, we know that whilst we have continued to make progress and overcome challenges in the last year, the work must continue.
“This year in the unprecedented climate of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, home should have been a place of safety and it's unacceptable that was not the case for victims of domestic abuse.
“Recognising the worrying increase in demand for support this year, we have invested over £5.5 million in additional funding to help vital projects and services across Scotland.
“More broadly, through our work in schools, colleges, universities and local communities we have continued to raise awareness and challenge the existing attitudes that underpin gender-based violence. We have invested in education and training to promote and progress gender equality in the workplace, and at a political level.”
Kenneth Gibson MSP added:
“While the necessary coronavirus restrictions have been a cause for concern for many women being subjected to abuse, it is reassuring that the SNP Government recognises the importance of Equally Safe and, together with COSLA, has continued to progress this throughout.
“Scotland is leading the way with ground-breaking legislation on domestic abuse protection orders and forensic medical services. The previous SNP Government passed the Abusive Behaviour and Sexual Harm Act to tackle the way modern technology can be used to perpetrate abuse, creating a new offence of sharing private intimate images without consent, or so-called ‘revenge porn’.
“The new Domestic Abuse (Protection) (Scotland) Bill will provide the police and courts with powers to make emergency notices and orders to protect people at risk – assuming other parties too vote in favour of these protections.
“I also want to pay tribute to organisations such as North Ayrshire Women’s Aid, the STAR Centre operated by Rape Crisis Scotland, and others helping women and girls out of violent and coercive situations and back on their feet.”