This paper provides an update to previous Scottish Government reports published in June 2020 and September 2020, which explored the impact of the COVID-19 on people experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG) between 30 March and 22 May 2020 (the period of lockdown)and Phases 1,2 and 3 of Scotland's Route map until 11 August 2020, respectively.
This paper outlines trends that have been identified from qualitative research on the experience of people experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of VAWG in the subsequent period, between 11 August and 11 October 2020. This period takes into account the return of the majority of children to schools in Scotland during Phase 3 of Scotland's route map and also includes the tightening of national restrictions by the Scottish Government on 14 September and 22 September, and various local restrictions.
The research for this report took place on a weekly basis throughout the period specified. Evidence has been gathered from two primary sources:
- Semi-structured telephone interviews with service managers and practitioners from Scottish statutory and third sector organisations involved in supporting people experiencing or perpetrating domestic abuse or other forms of VAWG; and
- Documentary evidence provided by organisations involved in supporting people experiencing or perpetrating domestic abuse or other forms of VAWG.
In total, 44 third sector and statutory organisation/services provided evidence via telephone interviews. The services/organisations that participated in the research have been anonymised. The majority of organisations involved primarily supported female victims of domestic abuse and the majority of incidents referred to involved a female victim and male perpetrator. Where possible, the terminology of "victim" and "perpetrator" has been used throughout the paper in order to maintain the anonymity of the small number of organisations that support all genders of victim.