Domestic abuse victims encouraged to seek support

Fewer than one in five incidents reported to police.

Victims of domestic violence have been encouraged to seek support and report incidents to police, following a reduction in recorded cases.

Newly published statistics show Police Scotland recorded 61,934 incidents of domestic abuse in 2022-23, a decrease of 4% compared to the previous year.

Most domestic abuse, however, is not reported. The most recent results from the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey (for 2018-20) estimated that only 16% of incidents were reported to police.

Victims Minister Siobhian Brown said:

“Domestic violence is abhorrent. Although these latest statistics show a decrease in police recorded incidents, we know that there are cases where violence and abuse is not reported. I would encourage victims to seek support from organisations who can help and, where they can, to report any abuse to police.

“Through Scotland’s Equally Safe Strategy, which focuses on early intervention, prevention and support services, we are putting in place measures to tackle the root causes of domestic abuse. It is imperative that where behaviours turn into violence and abuse, those responsible face the full force of the law and are brought to justice. Our landmark Domestic Abuse Act has provided more powers to police and courts to punish perpetrators of abuse and protect people at risk.

“This month we announced £2 million of funding for Rape Crisis Scotland and Scottish Women’s Aid to help reduce their waiting lists for women who need support services, including refuge places and counselling. This is in addition to £19 million annual funding from our Delivering Equally Safe Fund, which aims to tackle gender-based violence and has supported 121 projects from 112 organisations since October 2021 – benefitting almost 32,000 people in its first year.”


Domestic abuse recorded by the police in Scotland, 2022-23

The Victim Centred Approach Fund will also provide £48 million to 23 organisations from 2022-25, including £18.5 million for specialist advocacy support for survivors of gender-based violence.

Scotland’s Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline (0800 027 1234) provides a 24-hour, 365-day-a-year service, for victims of domestic abuse, sexual violence and other forms of violence against women, providing confidentiality and specialist advice. The Scottish Government has provided £1.9 million funding to the helpline.



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